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05.10.23 OSBT PacketOpen Space Board of Trustees May 10, 2023 MEETING AGENDA (Please note that times are approximate.) I. (6:00) Approval of the Minutes II. (6:10) Public Comment for Items not Identified for Public Hearing III. (6:20) Matters from the Board A. Comments/Questions from Trustees on Written Information memos or public comment (10 min) B. Clarify who may speak at June 1 City Council meeting regarding E-bikes on Open Space Evaluation (10 min) IV. (6:40) *Consideration of a request from the Mary Beth Kent Family Trust and representatives to approve and recommend that City Council approve a permanent, nonexclusive sewer line easement across a portion of the City of Boulder’s Gebhard Open Space property for the installation, operation, maintenance, repair and replacement of a sanitary sewer connection to serve the proposed Peacock Place subdivision at 5691 S. Boulder Road pursuant to the disposal procedures of Article XII, Section 177 of the City of Boulder Charter. IV. (7:40) Matters from the Department A. Update on 2024 Budget: 2nd Touch (45 min) B. Gebhard Site Plan Project Update (35 min) C. Director Verbal Updates (5 min) V. (9:05) Adjourn * Public Hearing Written Information A. Update on OSMP's Implementation of the Preferred Alternative Approach for Reducing Prairie Dog Related Conflicts to OSMP Irrigated Agricultural Lands B. Update on Community Wildfire Protection Plan C. 2022 Master Plan Annual Report Open Space Board of Trustees Members: Dave Kuntz (2019-2024) Caroline Miller (2020-2025) Michelle Estrella (2021-2026) Jon Carroll (2022-2027) Brady Robinson (2023-2028) Open Space Board of Trustees *TENTATIVE Board Items Calendar (Updated April 27, 2023) May 18, 2023 June 14, 2023 July 12, 2023 Field Trip: 3:00 – 5:00 pm Field trip will feature site visits to several OSMP-Managed Irrigated Agricultural properties experiencing conflicts with the presence of Prairie Dogs. Site visits are designed to help support upcoming staff-board discussions regarding prairie dog management and the restoration of irrigated agricultural lands. Matters from the Board: •Trustee questions on Written Memo items or public comment (10 min) Action Items: Matters from the Department: •2024 Budget: 3rd touch with the Board (75 min) •Operational Adjustments to the Preferred Alternative Management approach for reducing conflicts between prairie dogs and irrigated agricultural lands (60 min) •"Presence on the Land" initiative update (30 min) •Director Verbal Updates (5 min) Matters from the Board: •Trustee questions on Written Memo items or public comment (10 min) Action Items: •Recommendation on operational adjustments to the Preferred Alternative Management approach for reducing conflicts between prairie dogs and irrigated agricultural lands (90 min) •Recommendation on OSMP's 2024 Operating and CIP budget (60 min) •Recommendation on Boulder Junction OS-O (30 min) Matters from the Department: •Director Verbal Update (5 min) *All items are subject to change. A final version of the agenda is posted on the web during the week prior to the OSBT meeting. OPEN SPACE BOARD OF TRUSTEES Action Minutes Meeting Date April 12, 2023 Record of this meeting can be found here: https://bouldercolorado.gov/government/watch-board- meetings (video start times are listed below next to each agenda item). BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT Dave Kuntz Michelle Estrella Jon Carroll Brady Robinson STAFF MEMBERS PRESENT Dan Burke Jeff Haley Jennelle Freeston Lauren Kilcoyne Heather Swanson Leah Russell Bethany Collins Brian Anacker Cole Moffatt Samantha McQueen Greg Seabloom Lisa Goncalo Debbie Cushman Lynn Riedel Megan Grunewald Burton Stoner Kacey French Sara Kramer Chance Nelson Natasha Steinmann CALL TO ORDER The meeting was called to order at 6:01 p.m. AGENDA ITEM 1 – Oath of Office and Board Elections (04:10) The newest Open Space Board of Trustees (OSBT) member, Brady Robinson, read and signed the Oath of Office. Brady Robinson moved to appoint Dave Kuntz as the Chairperson for the Open Space Board of Trustees, Michelle Estrella as the Vice Chair for the Open Space Board of Trustees and Leah Russell as the Board Secretary. Jon Carroll seconded. All motions passed unanimously by acclamation; Caroline Miller was not present. AGENDA ITEM 2 – Approval of the Minutes (09:26) The Open Space Board of Trustees adopted the minutes from Mar. 8, 2023 as amended. This motion passed three to zero; Brady Robinson abstained, and Caroline Miller was not present. AGENDA ITEM 3 – Public Participation for Items not Identified for Public Hearing (10:48) Dustin Miller spoke on behalf of the Rocky Mountain Hang Gliding Paragliding Association (RMHPA) as their communications manager to thank Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) and City of Boulder Parks and Recreation for their work with the organization. Dustin also provided background on the organization. Tom Isaacson, former Open Space Board Trustee, spoke on behalf of the Boulder Climbing Community (BCC) to follow up on the email from Kate Beezley to the Board regarding the Update on Flagstaff Nighttime Parking Hours and Permitting System. The BCC suggested program improvements including using the same system as is used for the Off-Trail Permit Program for travel off designated trails in Habitat Conservation Areas (HCAs) and to have the Flagstaff After-Hours Parking Permits be valid for longer periods of time versus the current system for a single date. AGENDA ITEM 4 – Matters from the Board (19:29) Jennelle Freeston, Interim Open Space & Mountain Parks Deputy Director for Community Connections and Partnerships, led the Board in an ice breaker with introductions. Jennelle and Leah shared that the Board would receive details to participate in a series of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) trainings Agenda Item 1 - Page 1 led by the city. The Board asked questions about the written information on the Flagstaff Nighttime Parking Hours and Permitting System, and Michelle Estrella clarified that her questions were not related to her position on the Access Fund. Board questions included the success of the system and how it addresses the safety concerns, considerations for increasing ranger nighttime patrols, where the responsibility of enforcement overlaps with the Boulder Sheriff’s Department and the possibility of hiring third-party security for patrols, whether the Flagstaff After-Hours Parking Permit could use a similar auto-issue system as the Off-Trail Permit Program or whether a longer-term permit could be considered, what would change with enforcement if the permit system ended, and whether having more recreational users in the area would deter criminal activity. Staff confirmed that the Board could receive an update on the system at the end of 2023. Regarding the written information on the Request from Peacock Place Development Team for City of Boulder Public Works – Utilities Sanitary Sewer Connection across Gebhard Open Space, the Board asked for clarification on the location of the sewer line on the map and whether there are manholes on the existing sewer line. The Board appointed Jon Carroll as the OSBT Representative to serve on the Boulder Junction Boards & Commissions Team. AGENDA ITEM 5 – Matters from the Department (1:05:46) Lisa Goncalo, Ecology Senior Program Manager, presented the RMHPA Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Update. The Board asked when the MOU is presented to Parks and Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB), what led to the creation of the MOU, what meetings continue with RMHPA during the time the MOU is active, what the process is for partner associations to become involved in planning decisions, whether the launch access points are on designated trails, what other visitor use takes place at the launch access points and whether other types of use might terminate in off-trail travel from the launch access points, and whether the MOU could clarify when commercial use permits might be necessary. Jennelle Freeston, Interim Open Space & Mountain Parks Deputy Director of Community Connections and Partnerships, Beau Clark, Trail Program Manager, and Debbie Cushman, Volunteerism and Service Learning Program Manager, presented the Volunteerism, Service Learning and Partnerships Program Update and National Volunteer Week Recognition. The Board asked what resources have been most effective for recruitment and for finding repeat volunteers, how companies connect with staff for volunteer projects, how many volunteers are court mandated, how to adjust the Let’s Doo IT Campaign to encourage users to pick up their own dog waste, how many of the flags placed as part of the campaign are for bagged versus unbagged waste, and what partnerships could be made with local dog organizations to improve the campaign. Samantha McQueen, Business Services Manager, and Cole Moffatt, Senior Accountant, presented the 2024 OSMP Budget: 1st touch with OSBT. The Board asked how the operating reserves are calculated, what the advantages are to separating Operating costs from Capital Improvement Program (CIP) costs within the budget, why the Adjustments to Base (ATB) must be requested separately to access grant funding and how those funds can be carried over to the following year, what the definitions are for the audits described in Table 1: Draft 2022 Revenues and why those figures fluctuate greatly each year, what led to the decline shown in agricultural lease revenues, and what influence the Director and the Board have over changes to the budget. Dan Burke, Director of OSMP, provided verbal updates on the upcoming 2023 Front Range Open Space Research Symposium on April 14 and the 2023 Spring Open House on April 25. Dan summarized Agenda Item 1 - Page 2 updates on the recent Tribal Consultation and announced the field trip on May 18 to several OSMP- managed irrigated agricultural sites experiencing conflicts with the presence of prairie dogs. ADJOURNMENT – The meeting adjourned at 9:00 p.m. These draft minutes were prepared by Megan Grunewald. Agenda Item 1 - Page 3 CITY OF BOULDER OPEN SPACE BOARD OF TRUSTEES AGENDA ITEM MEETING DATE: May 10, 2023 AGENDA TITLE Consideration of a request from the Mary Beth Kent Family Trust and representatives to approve and recommend that City Council approve a permanent, nonexclusive sewer line easement across a portion of the City of Boulder’s Gebhard Open Space property for the installation, operation, maintenance, repair and replacement of a sanitary sewer connection to serve the proposed Peacock Place subdivision at 5691 S. Boulder Road pursuant to the disposal procedures of Article XII, Section 177 of the City of Boulder Charter. PRESENTER/S Dan Burke, Director, Open Space and Mountain Parks Lauren Kilcoyne, Deputy Director, Open Space and Mountain Parks Bethany Collins, Senior Real Estate Manager, Open Space and Mountain Parks EXECUTIVE SUMMARY This agenda item is for consideration of a request by the Mary Beth Kent Family Trust, Joseph Kent, Trustee – represented by Boulder Creek Neighborhoods and Joe and Karrie Kent (“Request Team”) – for an easement for a sanitary sewer line connection across a portion of the city-owned Gebhard Open Space (the “OSMP Property,” shown on Attachments A and B), which is managed by the Open Space and Mountain Parks department (OSMP), to connect the proposed Peacock Place subdivision to the existing city sewer main. The proposed sewer line easement, as generally depicted on Attachments B and C, would be approximately 30’-wide x 85’-long (0.059 acres) during construction and a minimum of 25’-wide by 75’-long (0.043 acres) for ongoing maintenance, repair and replacement access. The 8” sewer main connection and manhole(s) would be installed within an excavated trench. The OSMP Property was acquired in 1971 and is located within the South Boulder Creek State Natural Area which includes designated critical habitat for the federally-threatened Preble’s meadow jumping mouse (PMJM), as well as important wetland and floodplain resources. This OSMP Property is also where staff are currently implementing actions associated with Gebhard Integrated Site Project (ISP) recommended by the Open Space Board of Trustees (OSBT) in 2020. The focus of this site project is to restore and protect the valuable resources on this OSMP-managed property while continuing to provide positive visitor experiences, however the specific area of the OSMP Property associated with this easement request includes the Howard Ditch as well as existing underground sanitary sewer Agenda Item 4 - page 1 and storm sewer infrastructure which have associated ongoing maintenance and access activities as shown on Attachment D. Article XII, Section 176 of the City of Boulder Charter (Charter) provides that open space land may not be improved after acquisition unless such improvements are necessary to protect or maintain the land or to provide for passive recreational, open agricultural, or wildlife habitat use of the land. Therefore, conveyance of permanent easements for utility uses are processed as disposals consistent with Charter Sections 175 and 177 of the Charter Article XII which require OSBT approval and recommendation to City Council to dispose of any open space land interests. In order to follow Charter provisions and provide consistent review and consideration of disposal requests, OSMP staff utilizes the “Guidance for License and Disposal Requests involving Open Space Lands” document (“OSMP’s L&D Guidance,” found here: L&D Guidance). As further detailed in this memo, OSMP staff have reviewed the Request Team’s materials (Attachments E and F) and supplemented with information known to staff to provide a staff recommendation to OSBT, which includes consideration of the available alternative described below, as well as the impacts and benefits to OSMP land and resources and the general public. If recommended and approved by OSBT and approved by City Council, OSMP staff will work with the City Attorney’s Office to draft a sewer line easement and will monitor and enforce its terms which will include provisions related to construction/reconstruction disturbance, restoration (including revegetation and weed control), and ongoing maintenance access. While the sewer line easement would be conveyed to the Request Team (as owners/developers of the 5691 S. Boulder Road property), the easement rights will be assigned to the City’s Public Works – Utilities department (Utilities) via dedication of the public infrastructure or as otherwise may be required in subdivision approvals (approximately two years after installation). STAFF RECOMMENDATION OSMP staff recommends that the Open Space Board of Trustees approve and recommend that City Council approve the request for a permanent, nonexclusive sewer line easement across a portion of the City of Boulder’s Gebhard Open Space property for the installation, operation, maintenance, repair and replacement of a sanitary sewer connection to serve the proposed Peacock Place subdivision at 5691 S. Boulder Road pursuant to the disposal procedures of Article XII, Section 177 of the City of Boulder Charter and after the following conditions have been met: 1.Approved annexation and site review for the development of the 5691 S. Boulder Road property that would require such sewer line connection; 2. Updated Preble’s Meadow Jumping Mouse habitat assessment and consultation with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, with a “no effect” determination, to the satisfaction of OSMP staff; 3. Payment of $515 for the sewer line easement interest in the OSMP Property; 4. Conveyance of an access easement to the city from 55th Street across the 5691 S. Boulder Road property to the adjacent Gebhard Open Space property for limited non-public, utility and open space construction and maintenance access; and 5. Contribution of $5000 to OSMP’s Gebhard ISP Capital Improvement Project. COMMUNITY SUSTAINABILITY ASSESSMENTS AND IMPACTS Agenda Item 4 - page 2 •Economic – If approved, the Request Team and Utilities will bear all costs related to the sewer connection and the Request Team’s preferred alignment identified in this request would be the lower-cost alternative to this proposed affordable housing project. •Environmental – As proposed, impacts to OSMP resources can be minimized or mitigated. •Social – Approval of this request would facilitate annexation and development of the Peacock Place subdivision, forty percent of which is permanently middle-income affordable housing to meet city housing goals and would contribute to positive neighbor relations. OTHER IMPACTS •Fiscal – The Request Team will be required to pay OSMP $515 for the sewer line connection interest in the OSMP Property. The proposed access easement to the city and contribution to the Gebhard ISP Capital Improvement project are of value to the city and OSMP program. •Staff time - Sufficient funding for staff time is available to perform the work necessary to process this request. PUBLIC COMMENT AND PROCESS This item is being heard as part of this public meeting advertised in the Daily Camera on May 7, 2023. A Notice of Disposal of Open Space Lands was published in the Daily Camera on April 28, 2023 and April 29, 2023 pursuant to Section 177 of the Boulder City Charter. ANALYSIS In February 2023, OSMP Real Estate staff received an open space disposal request for 5691 S. Boulder Road / Peacock Place (Attachment E) from the Request Team related to a proposed sanitary sewer connection to serve the proposed Peacock Place subdivision which has been submitted to the City’s Planning and Development Services department for annexation and site plan review. The proposed easement across the OSMP Property, as generally depicted on Attachments B and C, would be approximately 30’-wide x 85’-long (0.059 acres) during construction and a minimum of 25’-wide by 75’-long (0.043 acres) for ongoing maintenance, repair and replacement access. The 8” sewer main connection and manhole(s) would be installed within an excavated trench. The OSMP Property was acquired in 1971 and is located within the South Boulder Creek State Natural Area which includes designated critical habitat for the federally-threatened PMJM as well as important wetland and floodplain resources. This OSMP Property is also the site where staff are currently implementing actions associated with Gebhard ISP recommended by the OSBT in 2020. The focus of this site project is to restore and protect the valuable resources on this OSMP-managed property while continuing to provide positive visitor experiences, however the specific area of the OSMP Property associated with this request includes the Howard Ditch as well as existing underground sanitary sewer and storm sewer infrastructure which have associated ongoing maintenance and access activities. After reviewing the initial request materials, staff asked additional questions of the Request Team related to available alternatives and project impacts and benefits of both feasible alternatives. The Request Team’s responses are attached at Attachment F. As outlined in OSMP’s L&D Guidance, for OSMP staff to adequately consider a request, information is necessary to determine whether a disposal will impact and/or enhance open space Agenda Item 4 - page 3 charter purposes and resources; what overall benefits there may be to the city’s open space program and system (as well as the general public); and what alternatives may be available where the same goals can be achieved without disposing open space. The following is a summary of OSMP staff’s analysis of the request and available alternatives: Available Alternative: The proposed Peacock Place subdivision lies north of the Greenbelt Meadows residential subdivision. The approved Greenbelt Meadows subdivision plat includes an outlot dedicated for public utilities, which is currently owned and maintained by the Greenbelt Meadows Homeowners Association (HOA) as a neighborhood park and manicured green space. This outlot includes the city’s existing sewer main and the subdivision’s sewer connection and is an available and feasible alternative sewer connection for the proposed Peacock Place subdivision (“Outlot Alternative”). However, the neighbors and Greenbelt Meadows HOA have expressed strong opposition and a preference to locate the sewer connection on the OSMP Property versus the Outlot Alternative, as well as the potential for formal action to prevent use of the outlot. While both the Request Team’s counsel and the city attorney for Planning & Development Services (P&DS) believe the plat language provides for installation and maintenance of public utilities across the Greenbelt Meadows outlot, the Request Team has indicated that defending any action brought by the HOA could be costly enough to this affordable housing project to make it impracticable, and also notes that construction of the Outlot Alternative would be more costly and have more significant surface disturbance to lands immediately adjacent to the OSMP Property. While the OSMP staff would prefer the sewer line connection be located in the Outlot Alternative, the Request Team has detailed the likely conflicts that could ensue and OSMP staff believes the disturbance to the OSMP Property can be satisfactorily restored (and overseen by OSMP staff) and the benefits proposed by the Request Team are valuable to OSMP. Impacts to Open Space Land and Resources: OSMP staff does not agree with the Request Team’s opinion that the requested sewer line connection would have no permanent impacts to open space land, uses, or sensitive resources and has compiled a comparison of the proposed project impacts to the OSMP property and Outlot Alternative. OSMP Property Outlot Alternative Temporary [Construction] Impacts ~85'x30' for construction via trenching to bury line 5-6' ~255'x30' for construction via trenching to bury line 5-6' Ongoing Impacts 1-2 surface manholes; ongoing 30’-wide x 75’-long easement area for access, maintenance, repair, replacement (surface can be used for open space uses that don’t conflict with access and maintenance needs) 1-2 surface manholes; ongoing 30’-wide x 250’-long easement for access, maintenance, repair, replacement (surface can be used for all uses that don’t conflict with access and maintenance needs) Plant Resources Disturbed non-native vegetation in proximity to rare plant communities and Within open, manicured turf lawn and gravel road/path Agenda Item 4 - page 4 within mapped wetland habitat (and likely requires a city wetland permit), but not identified for restoration in Gebhard ISP Wildlife Resources Within designated PMJM critical habitat (area is managed for PMJM); Within disturbed, but restorable area of Northern leopard frog habitat Within designated PMJM critical habitat (area is not managed for PMJM) Floodplain Resources Within conveyance/100-year flood zone Within 500-year flood zone or conveyance/100-year flood zone (depending on alignment) Passive Recreation Resources Close proximity to public trail to be formalized during implementation of the Gebhard ISP Park/green space (turf lawn) and gravel open space access path with future designated access to OSMP trail Existing Uses and Access Storm and sanitary sewer infrastructure (and associated access); public open space and buffer to higher-value habitat to the east Sanitary sewer infrastructure (and associated access) and pedestrian, emergency and drainage access; manicured turf area for neighborhood While there are anticipated impacts to the OSMP Property that could be avoided via the available Outlot Alternative, the disturbance from the installation of the sewer line can be restored (and overseen by OSMP staff) and the potential ongoing impacts from maintaining the sewer line are in an area with existing utilities and access needs. Benefits to Open Space Land and Resources and/or the General Public The Request Team has submitted extensive information demonstrating how the proposed Peacock Place subdivision could benefit the general public by providing affordable housing and outlines how it supports certain development policies in the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan and have proposed benefits to the OSMP program to acquire the sewer line easement and balance temporary and permanent impacts to the OSMP Property. If approved the Request Team will: •Pay OSMP $515 for the sewer line connection interest in the OSMP Property. •Contribute $5000 to OSMP’s Gebhard ISP Capital Improvement Project which will support implementation of OSMP’s habitat restoration and visitor improvement objectives on the OSMP Property. •Convey a permanent access easement to the city across the 5691 S. Boulder Road property to the OSMP Property for limited utility and open space construction and maintenance access. Joe and Karrie Kent have cooperated with OSMP and Utilities staff over the years to permit informal access over their private site to the adjacent OSMP Property, including the existing city sewer and storm sewer utilities. Considering Utilities would need access to this requested sewer connection, as well as existing sewer connections, and OSMP will have a formalized trail and foot bridges in the vicinity of the sewer connection (with a designated public access point from the Greenbelt Meadows outlot) through implementation of the Gebhard ISP, a Agenda Item 4 - page 5 permanent easement for limited staff, construction and enforcement vehicular access (not public access) would be of benefit to the OSMP program. Article XII, Sections 175 and 177 of the Charter require an OSBT approval and recommendation to City Council to dispose of any open space land interests under Section 177 of the Boulder City Charter. If recommended and approved by OSBT and approved by City Council, OSMP staff will work with CAO to finalize the sewer line service line easement and will monitor and enforce its terms which will include provisions related to construction/reconstruction disturbance, restoration (including revegetation and weed control), and ongoing maintenance access. While the sewer line easement would be conveyed to the Request Team (as owners/developers of the 5691 S. Boulder Road property), the easement rights will be assigned to the City’s Public Works – Utilities department (“Utilities”) via dedication of the public infrastructure or as otherwise may be required in subdivision approvals (approximately two years after installation). CONCLUSION Due to the following factors and after considering the impacts, benefits, and alternatives of the proposed request consistent with OSMP’s L&D Guidance, OSMP staff supports a recommendation and approval of a permanent, nonexclusive sewer line easement installation, operation, maintenance, repair and replacement of a sanitary sewer connection across a portion of the OSMP Property to serve the proposed Peacock Place subdivision at 5691 S. Boulder Road: •The proposed sewer connection and ongoing access are in an area of other ditch, utilities and trail infrastructure that have ongoing access and maintenance needs. •The area of the proposed sewer connection has been previously disturbed; is non-native and not identified for restoration as part of the Gebhard ISP (due to likelihood of continued disturbance); and will be restored at the expense of the Request Team as directed by OSMP staff. •The Request Team will be required to update their Preble’s Meadow Jumping Mouse habitat assessment and consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to the satisfaction of OSMP staff which includes the updated disturbance areas from the Peacock Place development proposal and proposed sewer line connection. •If rare or sensitive resources are found within the proposed easement area, the alignment or construction schedule will be adjusted as determined by OSMP staff. •OSMP will be paid the fair market value of the easement interest in the OSMP Property, and the easement will have strict terms related to construction/reconstruction disturbance, restoration and ongoing maintenance access. •The Outlot Alternative is more costly and could be more impactful to resources and carries the potential for neighborhood conflict and formal action, if pursued. •The Request Team has proposed benefits to balance the potential project impacts which are valuable to OSMP. NEXT STEPS If the disposal is recommended and approved by OSBT, OSMP staff will bring the recommendation before City Council for consideration, and if approved, OSMP staff will work with the City Attorney’s Office to draft the sewer line easement which will not be executed until/unless the Peacock Place development is approved and conditions are met and will also include provisions for reversion if the use is ever terminated or if the infrastructure is removed or abandoned. ATTACHMENTS: Agenda Item 4 - page 6 •Attachment A: Vicinity Map •Attachment B: Location Map •Attachment C: Easement civil drawing •Attachment D: Map of existing utilities •Attachment E: Request Team’s Initial Request •Attachment F: Request Team’s Response to OSMP questions and cover letter from Request Team’s counsel, Holland & Hart. Agenda Item 4 - page 7 S B r o a d w a y Table Mesa Dr Colorado Ave S Foothills HwyBaseline Rd Foothills PkwyUS 36 E x p r e s s L n S Boulder Rd Denv e r B o u l d e r T u r n p i k e User: cassidyj Date: 5/1/2023 Document Path: E:\MapFiles\Property\Gebhard\Vicinity_Gebhard_2023.mxd Legend ATTACHMENT A: Vicinity MapGebhard Sewer Line Disposal Approximate property boundaries from Boulder County Assessor'sdata. City of Boulder OSMP Subject Property Highway Roads I 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5Miles SU B J E C T Boulder City Limits Attachment A Agenda Item 4 - page 8 Gebhard Hogan Pancost 55th St Ontario Pl Mineola CtMineola Ct HowardDitchSouthBoulderC re e k Ho w a r d D i t c h S u p e r p h o s t i c a l User: cassidyj Date: 5/3/2023 Document Path: E:\MapFiles\Property\Gebhard\Location_Gebhard_2023.mxd Attachment B: Location MapProposed Sewer Connection-Gebhard Open Space I 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04Miles Legend Proposed Sewer Connection OSMP Ownership Peacock Place Attachment B Agenda Item 4 - page 9 Attachment CAgenda Item 4 - page 10 Proposed Sewer Connection r 0 75 150 ft © 2022 City of Boulder, Colorado | For additional info, please visit https://boulderplandevelop.net | Date: 5/3/2023 Exhibit D - Existing Utilities Proposed Sewer Connection City Limits Parcels - County Mapping (for reference) QS Grid Water Mains Water Laterals Other Drain Fireline Hydrant System Valves Other Mainline Fireline Hydrant Zone Fire Hydrants Meter Pits Storm Culverts Storm Mains Storm Inlets Storm Manholes Storm Detention Sewer Mains Sewer Fittings Sewer Cleanouts Sewer Manholes Sewer Service (approximate location) Telecom Conduit Telecom Manholes Other Handhole Manhole Small Cellular Pole Cases In Review Approved Attachment D Agenda Item 4 - page 11 I. MAKING A REQUEST License and disposal requests are generally pursued after requestor has consulted with OSMP staff, reviewed this guidance document, and submitted a non-refundable administrative fee and the materials/information requested by staff. Based on the specific request, site, and project elements, OSMP staff will seek information and documentation from the requestor necessary to fully inform staff on the request which requires2: •Requestor name and contact information •Written narrative describing details of proposal and reason for license or disposal request •Map depicting locations and property(ies) involved in request •Identification of regulatory agencies with jurisdiction over the land use or proposed project Requestor name and contact information PROPERTY OWNER Mary Beth Kent Family Trust, with Joseph Kent as the Trustee Joseph Kent 720-231-8800 j.mkent@comcast.net 531 Columbine Avenue Broomfield CO 80020 DEVELOPER Boulder Creek Neighborhoods Attn: Mike Cooper, Director of Entitlements (720-837-5491, mcooper@livebouldercreek.com) Louisville CO 80227 Written narrative describing details of proposal and reason for license or disposal request Proposal Overview Boulder Creek Neighborhoods (BCN) has submitted a revised City of Boulder Annexation and Site Review submittal for Peacock Place, a new neighborhood enclave on the west side of a 5.5 acre property located north of South Boulder Road and east of 55th Street. BCN is a unique, local builder and developer based in Louisville, CO who focuses on attainable, Missing Middle housing, and active adult communities in the Boulder County area. At the heart of Boulder Creek’s designs are energy efficiency, durability, and non-typical floorplans. BCN intends to develop a micro pocket neighborhood with a mix of single-family detached PEACOCK PLACE – 5691 S. BOULDER ROAD REQUEST FOR OPEN SPACE DISPOSAL PROPOSAL February 9, 2023 This disposal request is made in accordance with the following: Attachment E Agenda Item 4 - page 12 2 homes and wee-Cottages© (the Cottage Homes). This pedestrian-oriented neighborhood and product type is in high demand and undersupplied in Boulder and throughout Colorado, and provides an important Missing Middle housing type with the following key characteristics: •Clustered homes around shared green spaces that provide a scale of housing between single-family homes and multi-family homes •Compatible in scale with single-family homes •Attainable housing choices for middle-income families without subsidies An overview of the project site: •The project site is located on the east side of 55th St, north of South Boulder Rd. and south of the East Boulder Community Park/Center. Surrounding single-family residential neighborhoods are Greenbelt Meadows (adjacent to the south, annexed in 1983) and Keewaydin Meadows (to the northwest, annexed in 1963). A recently purchased city- owned open space parcel is adjacent to the north. Area city zoning is Public, Low- Density Residential -1, and Low-Density Residential - 2. •The 5.5 acre (241,267 s.f.) parcel at 5691 South Boulder Rd. was created in the early 1960’s.The house has a failing well and the owners seek city water and sewer service via annexation •The Kents have cooperated with the City of Boulder over the years to allow access to the open space to the east for various maintenance purposes. The Kents would continue to grant access through the site along the south edge of the site to the City of Boulder. •The survey and site plan show the key site features. These include: ▪Existing pond ▪The boundaries of the 500-year floodplain, 100-year floodplain, and conveyance zone ▪Super-Phostical Lateral in front of the existing house and Dry Creek (irrigates the meadow) ▪Driveway and stormwater ditch along the south property line An overview of the revised city application: •The proposed initial zoning is RL-2, Low-Density Residential – 2. •The proposed neighborhood consists of fifteen (15) new homes and the construction of one (1) new home in the general location of the existing (currently vacant) single family home at the east end of the site. •The project has been reviewed in a 2018 Annexation Feasibility Study, a 2020 Concept Plan application, and a November 2020 Site Review application (in conceptual discussions with city staff in 2021 and 2022, as several potential developers were in discussions with the Kents and the City Housing and Human Services Department). At the Planning Board meeting on the Concept Plan on June 4, 2020, the majority of Board members expressed support for RL-2 zoning, more affordable housing, providing community benefit, single-family homes and duplexes with 8, 12, or 16 units, Attachment E Agenda Item 4 - page 13 3 Sanitary Sewer Based on our review of the existing site conditions and currently available sanitary sewer infrastructure, the applicant proposes to install a new 8” sanitary sewer main through the proposed development, which would flow east through the property. The sanitary sewer main would connect to the existing 36” sanitary sewer main located in the City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) property east of the site for a distance of approximately 75 feet from the east property line. This area has been disturbed in recent years by city maintenance for storm sewer maintenance. We have elected to pursue this option, including an application for open space disposal, due to feedback we have received from the Greenbelt Meadows Homeowners’ Association. The HOA has a strong preference to connect to the 36” main on OSMP property versus a connection though the private HOA open space. Reason for Disposal Request An open space disposal is requested because the distance for the sanitary sewer main connection for the proposed new neighborhood to the main on the adjacent OSMP site would be 75 feet where the optional sewer connection to the south would be 250 feet and would require disturbing the Greenbelt Meadows private open space area. An approval of the requested open space disposal would result in very minimal impact to City of Boulder open space while avoiding impact to the residents of the adjacent Greenbelt Meadows property. Map depicting locations and property(ies) involved in request See attached: -Site survey -Proposed Annexation/Site Review site plan -Proposed civil plans, showing proposed sanitary sewer main and connection Identification of regulatory agencies with jurisdiction over the land use or proposed project City of Boulder Planning & Development Services – Site Review and Annexation •City Council is the approval authority Attachment E Agenda Item 4 - page 14 Sheet# DateDescription1 11/30/20 Site Review201/27/23City CommentsC:\Users\Mike\SiteWorks\Projects - Documents\2020 Projects\20180 5691 South Boulder Road\07-Drawings\07.01.04-Site Review\20180B-C-300.dwg Project No:By:File:PeacockPlace5691 South Boulder RoadBoulder, Colorado20180BJAS/MRF/DPA20180B-C-300.dwgNot forConstructionPreliminarySanitary SewerPlanC-301Attachment E Agenda Item 4 - page 15 Attachment EAgenda Item 4 - page 16 Attachment EAgenda Item 4 - page 17 Attachment EAgenda Item 4 - page 18 J. Marcus Painter Partner Phone 303.473.2713 mpainter@hollandhart.com Location Contact 1800 Broadway, Suite 300 Boulder, CO 80302 Mailing Address 1800 Broadway, Suite 300 Boulder, CO 80302 p: 303.473.2700 | f: 303.473.2720 www.hollandhart.com Holland & Hart LLP Anchorage Aspen Billings Boise Boulder Cheyenne Denver Jackson Hole Las Vegas Reno Salt Lake City Santa Fe Washington, D.C. May 2, 2023 VIA EMAIL Honorable Members of the Board of Trustees c/o Bethany Collins Senior Manager, Real Estate Services City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks 2520 55th Street Boulder, CO 80301 Re: 5691 South Boulder Road (the “Property”) Gebhard Open Space Request for Disposition of Approximately 85-foot-long Easement to Connect to Existing Public Utility Storm and Sanitary Sewer Facilities in Gebhard Open Space Dear Trustees: On behalf of the Mary Beth Kent Family Trust, the “Owner” of the 5.5-acre Property, we submit this brief summary of the request for this disposition – minor in size and impact, but significant in benefit to OSMP and more broadly to the City of Boulder community. Generations of the Kent family have been active contributors to the Boulder community for many generations. The family home is situated at the east side of the parcel, sandwiched between the East Boulder Recreation Center, part of the Hogan/Pancost property, what ultimately became the Gebhard Open Space, and the Greenbelt Meadows subdivision. Until the 2013 flood, the home relied on well water, but following the flood, the well became permanently fouled and unusable. Since the County had no domestic water to provide, the Kent family turned to the City of Boulder, which could not supply water without annexing the Property. And in accordance with City standards, such annexation required significant community benefit in the form of development of substantial affordable housing on the site. The subdivision and annexation of the Property is underway with the City of Boulder. Development of fifteen new homes is planned using local developer, Boulder Creek Neighborhoods – including six permanently affordable middle income cottage homes, six market rate units, and three market rate attainable units, (with the potential for an additional six accessory dwelling units). This vision of the housing has been worked on by the Owner, BCN and the City Housing department extensively, and the parties are excited about the opportunity to provide much needed affordable and market rate attainable housing to the community. Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 19 May 2, 2023 Page 2 The Owner plans to rebuild the family home at the east end of the Property and connect to City water and sewer. Because of the terrain, connection to water and sewer in 55th Street is not possible, and connection to the large sanitary and storm sewer complex immediately east of the Property in the Gebhard Open Space is necessary. The route for the development’s sewer system is either (i) a direct 85 feet across the Open Space through area already used largely for this same purpose to the existing manhole, or (ii) at a much greater cost and much greater risk of maintenance, a route that traverses approximately 250 feet through an outlot within the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood, currently used as a neighborhood park – a route that the Greenbelt Meadows Neighborhood appears to be willing to object to on various legal grounds. The Owner is proposing the more direct route through this disposition request as: (i) the least impactful route, (ii) the route that avoids the potential for challenge by the Greenbelt Meadows homeowners that could jeopardize the affordable housing project and the substantial benefit of that housing to the community, and (iii) the route that allows the Owner to afford OSMP and the City with the following significant benefits: Needed maintenance and repair access to the existing storm and sanitary sewer complex already located on the Gebhard Open Space; Needed access for construction and repair for OSMP to the areas on the west side of South Boulder Creek and the Howard Ditch (such vehicular access does not currently legally and formally exist); A donation of $5000 to the Gebhard Open Space Capital Improvement Campaign Fund. Payment of $515 for the easement itself. We believe these benefits to OSMP and the City of Boulder meet the requirements of the Open Space Charter and support the City’s many goals under the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan and its need for affordable housing, while providing specific needed benefits to the Gebhard Open Space – all while creating little material impact on a portion of Open Space that is regularly accessed and disturbed by the City for existing similar facilities. We respectfully request that the Board of Trustees approve this very beneficial request. Very truly yours, J. Marcus Painter Partner of Holland & Hart LLP JMP:jmp cc: Janet Michels, CAO Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 20 May 2, 2023 Page 3 21378745_v3 Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 21 April 14, 2023 UPDATED April 27, 2023 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder Open Space & Mountain Parks 2520 55th Street Boulder, CO 80301 Reference: Response Letter – OSMP Disposal 5691 South Boulder Road – Boulder County, Colorado SiteWorks Project No. 20180 Dear Bethany: The following is a line-item response to the City of Boulder’s review comment email dated March 24, 2023, for the above referenced project. The comments are listed below with responses in italics. Please let us know if you have any questions or need any further clarification regarding these issues. What is the actual request? Since an easement can’t be conveyed from one city department to another, we basically permit use/transfer management for a non- OSMP purpose via an IDMOU. From my read, it is a request to approve the permitted use of about 2500 square feet (enter length and width of area needed) of the Gebhard Open Space property by the City of Boulder Utilities Dept for the installation and maintenance of a sanitary sewer connection and manhole(s) serving the Peacock Place subdivision. Correct? Yes, that is correct. The total length is approximately 85 linear feet. The temporary disturbed area needed for access and installation is approximately 2,500 SF. Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 22 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 2 of 12 Have connection(s) via the 25’-wide utility easements between Lots 75 and 76 on Mineola Court and/or Lots 61 and 62 on Genesee Court to the sewer lines in those cul-de-sacs been considered? If so, why was that alternative thrown out? We have explored both of those options, including with City staff. They are not feasible for a few reasons. 1. The sanitary sewer inverts at the existing manholes are too shallow and are not deep enough for the project. This would preclude gravity service to the new subdivision. We are already at minimum slopes for the proposed system. At these locations, the existing sanitary sewer manholes are five (5’) to six (6’) feet higher than the proposed connection to the existing 36” main. 2. Staff would not approve a lift station. 3. The 25’ easement would not give sufficient width for installation and maintenance of the sewer, water and storm sewer mains. 4. There are clearance issues to the existing water main, existing storm sewer main, and trees that are not allowed in the Design and Construction Standards. Sanitary sewer requires a ten (10’) foot separation from water, storm and trees. There is not enough room for sewer, water and storm in a 25’ easement. 5. There are also other private improvements including existing structures, fences, and private improvements that would be impacted. Has a connection within 55th Street been considered? If so, why was that alternative thrown out? We have explored this option as well, including with City staff, and it is also not feasible. There are no sanitary sewer mains located in 55th Street adjacent to the subject property. The existing sanitary sewer main is located approximately 300’ south, at the intersection of Ontario Place and 55th Street. As noted on the manholes in Mineola and Genesee Courts, the invert at the existing main is too shallow and not deep enough for this project. At this location, the existing sanitary sewer main is five (5’) feet higher than the proposed connection to the existing 36” main. You mentioned that your team and attorney have identified existing utility easement rights through the outlot/HOA park but that the neighbors aren’t supportive of your development utilizing those rights. Are those rights via the plat or via other formal easements? There is a platted utility easement across Outlot C Greenbelt Meadows. Refer to the final plat for Greenbelt Meadows Subdivision recorded at Reception No. 0621547 on May 17, 1084, linked below. The dedication language for the Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 23 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 3 of 12 subdivision identifies Outlot C as including a “public utility and pedestrian and emergency access” easement. P&DS Staff confirmed with the Applicant that this was available for our use. In fact, the existing Greenbelt Meadows sanitary sewer main is also installed across Outlot C. The HOA has strongly objected to our use of this outlot, and after consultation with their attorney, they have taken the position that the utility easement is not valid for our use (see discussion below). Final Plat link below. https://recorder.bouldercounty.org/countyweb/search/InstrumentImageView Internal.jsp;jsessionid=DE2AA72DA16034A895393B02A230CF42?isPrevi ew=true Excerpt from Greenbelt Meadows Subdivision Final Plat dedication language: Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 24 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 4 of 12 Excerpt from Greenbelt Meadows Subdivision Final Plat Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 25 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 5 of 12 While the Applicant believes the right of utility access exists across Outlot C per the above referenced dedication language, the strong objections of the HOA are notable (see Exhibit A). The issue of Outlot C’s availability for the easement has not been resolved and we understand that the HOA is represented by legal counsel on the matter. The involvement of Boulder Creek Neighborhood as developer of the new housing on Applicant’s property, and in particular the development of the “community benefit” affordable housing desired by the City, is critical and could be jeopardized by protracted disputes with the HOA over the utility easement – even if the Project’s right of access were ultimately deemed valid by a court. That is, such disputes have a significant cost in terms of money and time – both of which can have a potentially fatal effect on a 40% affordable housing project. Accordingly, the loss of community benefit to the City in the event the project failed to move forward due to litigation over the easement issue, would be significant. Much greater public benefit can be assured by avoiding the conflict with the HOA and permitting the easement as requested by the Applicant. Please provide a benefit and impact assessment for each alternative relative to open space land, purposes, programs, general public, resources, etc. (see IV.A of the guidance. https://bouldercolorado.gov/media/7662/download?inline). A. Benefit and Impact Assessment Impacts and benefits to open space land, purposes, or uses. Impacts There are no material permanent impacts to open space land, purposes or uses. The sanitary sewer main will be installed below grade. The temporary surface impacts due to construction will be properly mitigated. Further, the installation is in an area which already contains significant irrigation/stormwater/sewer connections to active mains located beneath this area of Open Space, and is beneath an area already used by the City to access such City infrastructure (i.e., while the affected area is technically within Open Space, it is not used for trails or other typical Open Space purposes and uses, but is accessed regularly by City utilities staff to maintain the many subsurface connections in the immediate area). Benefits Reimbursement for Open Space land disturbance: The requested Open Space disposal is for the purpose of constructing an approximately 85 foot sanitary sewer main to serve the Kent property. The Applicant proposes to either restore the surface of the disturbed area or reimburse the City of Boulder for the reasonable costs for such restoration. Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 26 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 6 of 12 Provision of a maintenance access easement to the City of Boulder: For years, the Kents have informally consented to access – without an easement – by both the City of Boulder Utilities Department and Open Space and Mountain Parks (via a gate at the eastern property line) along the south property line of 5691 S. Boulder Rd. The Applicant proposes to provide a formal maintenance access easement along the south property line to the City for (i) maintenance access to the sanitary and storm sewer facilities immediately east of the Applicant’s property, and (ii) OSMP construction and maintenance access to the Gebhard Open Space up to South Boulder Creek and the Howard Ditch system. The access would be limited and not general public access to the Gebhard Open Space1. Impacts and benefits to OSMP programs and/or the general public Impacts There are no impacts to OSMP programs and/or the general public. However, benefits to the City and the general public are significant and include (i) creation of a significant affordable housing development encouraged by the City of Boulder Housing Authority and the City Council, (ii) avoidance of significant costs to such an affordable housing project by connecting to the closest infrastructure only 85’ feet away instead of installing a connection through a neighboring park that would add 250’ hundred feet of additional sewer line cost, and (iii)avoidance of significant temporary disruption to the neighboring park for initial construction and periodic maintenance. Benefits Contribution to the Gebhard Capital Improvement Project: The Gebhard Integrated Site Project is located adjacent to the east property line of the 5691 S. Boulder Rd. The Applicant acknowledges the benefits of financially supporting this neighboring city project, including habitat restoration. Therefore, the Applicant proposes to contribute $5000 additional dollars to the City of Boulder/OSMP for the Gebhard Capital Improvement Project. 1 As we have discussed with OSMP staff, such easement would be similar in scope and limitation to other “purpose” language used in easements for the benefit of OSMP, such as: The Easement is for use only by the City and its contractors, mutual aid partners, agents, employees, and tenants, for pedestrian and vehicular ingress and egress access to the Lateral and the City Property for open space purposes, including agricultural operations. In no event shall the Easement be utilized by the public without the prior written approval from ___________, nor does this Agreement convey any rights in or access to the City Property to ___________. The Parties agree to reasonably cooperate regarding each other’s use of the Easement so as to not interfere with each other’s use and operations. Specific language will be determined collaboratively with the Applicant’s counsel and the Boulder City Attorney’s office. Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 27 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 7 of 12 Comprehensive Plan Goals: The benefits of the proposed Peacock Place annexation and housing development of 15 new homes (including six permanently affordable middle income cottage homes, six market rate units, and three market rate attainable units, (with the potential for an additional six accessory dwelling units)) support multiple Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan policies, such as: Policy 1.09 Growth Requirements: The overall effect of urban growth must add significant value to the community, improving quality of life. The city will require development and redevelopment to provide significant community benefits, achieve sustainability goals for urban form and to maintain or improve environmental quality as a precondition for further housing and community growth. This application meets the intent of providing significant community benefit through providing six new permanently affordable homes and several market rate attainable homes. Policy 1.10 Jobs: Housing Balance: Boulder is a major employment center, with more jobs than housing for people who work here. This has resulted in both positive and negative impacts, including economic prosperity, significant in- commuting and high demand on existing housing. The city will continue to be a major employment center and will seek opportunities to improve the balance of jobs and housing while maintaining a healthy economy. This will be accomplished by encouraging new housing and mixed-use neighborhoods in areas close to where people work, encouraging transit oriented development in appropriate locations, preserving service commercial uses, converting commercial and industrial uses to residential uses in appropriate locations, improving regional transportation alternatives and mitigating the impacts of traffic congestion. This beautiful property is adjacent to two Open Space properties but is close to a transit corridor on S. Boulder Road and is within easy walking distance to the East Boulder Community Center, a dog park, and many trails. This proposal for 15 new units (six permanently affordable) and accessory dwelling units, provides as many new units as possible given the environmental constraints of the property, with a site plan to minimize impacts to neighbors. 1.16(d) Annexation: In order to reduce the negative impacts of new development in the Boulder Valley, the city will annex Area II land with significant development or redevelopment potential only if the annexation provides a special opportunity or benefit to the city. For Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 28 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 8 of 12 annexation consideration, emphasis will be given to the benefits achieved from the creation of permanently affordable housing. Provision of the following may also be considered a special opportunity or benefit: receiving sites for transferable development rights (TDRs), reduction of future employment projections, land and/or facilities for public purposes over and above that required by the city’s land use regulations, environmental preservation or other amenities determined by the city to be a special opportunity or benefit. Parcels that are proposed for annexation that are already developed and which are seeking no greater density or building size would not be required to assume and provide that same level of community benefit as vacant parcels unless and until such time as an application for greater development is submitted. Proposed annexations with additional development potential need to demonstrate community benefit consistent with Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan (BVCP) policies to offset the negative impacts of additional development in the Boulder Valley. For proposed residential development, emphasis is given to the provision of permanently affordable housing. Annexation of substantially developed properties that allow for some additional residential units or commercial square footage will be required to demonstrate community benefit commensurate with their impacts. Further, annexations that resolve an issue of public health without creating additional development impacts should be encouraged. Annexation of this Low Density Residential, Area II land will bring desired community benefit consistent with BVCP policies to offset the negative impacts of additional development, carefully adding new permanently affordable housing with size limits (40% of proposed new units), along with market attainable units (due to size) while enhancing the open, landscaped areas of the site. Policy 2.03 Compact Development Pattern: Ensure that development will take place in an orderly fashion, take advantage of existing urban services, and avoid patterns of leapfrog, noncontiguous, scattered development within the Boulder Valley. The city prefers redevelopment and infill as compared to development in an expanded Service Area in order to prevent urban sprawl and create a compact community. Policy 2.10 Preservation and Support for Residential Neighborhoods: The city will work with neighborhoods to protect and enhance neighborhood character and livability and preserve the relative affordability of existing housing stock. The city will also work with neighborhoods to identify areas for additional housing, libraries, Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 29 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 9 of 12 recreation centers, parks, open space or small retail uses that could be integrated into and supportive of neighborhoods. The city will seek appropriate building scale and compatible character in new development or redevelopment, appropriately sized and sensitively designed streets and desired public facilities and mixed commercial uses. The city will also encourage neighborhood schools and safe routes to school. The annexation site is on the east edge of the city limits, bordered by Open Space on the north and east. It is also adjacent to the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood to the south and southeast. The proposed site plan carefully adds 15 new residential units as infill development along 55th Street, with an approach to minimize impacts to and support neighbors while creating a compact community. Policy 2.21 Commitment to a Walkable and Accessible City: The city and county will promote the development of a walkable and accessible city by designing neighborhoods and business areas to provide easy and safe access by foot to places such as neighborhood centers, community facilities, transit stops or centers, and shared public spaces and amenities… The proposal creates 15 new homes in a location where residents will have easy and safe walkable access to a transit stop, a recreation/community center, parks, and trails. Impacts and benefits to threatened and endangered species, wetlands, floodplains, or other sensitive features and resources There are no significant impacts to threatened and endangered species, wetlands, floodplains, or other sensitive features and resources. The proposed utility is outside of the City’s regulatory wetland boundaries. The utility will be constructed in the regulatory floodplain, but will not impact the floodplain or conveyance zone. There are no sensitive features and resources. Land management and stewardship considerations The underground utility will not affect land management and stewardship. Access through the OSPM property will be maintained. Maintenance access to the utility will be through the project site, and over existing access points used by the City for the stormwater and sewer mains located beneath the OSMP property adjacent to the Applicant’s property. Should you have any questions or comments concerning this letter, kindly give us a call. Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 30 Bethany A. Collins City of Boulder April 14, 2023/April 27, 2023 Page 10 of 12 Sincerely, Donald P. Ash, P.E. Principal – SiteWorks Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 31 EXHIBIT A GREENBELT MEADOWS HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION c/o Sentry Management, Inc 1375 Ken Pratt Blvd Suite 100, Longmont CO 80501 303-444-1456 July 27, 2021 City of Boulder Planning and Development Services 1739 Broadway, Third Floor Boulder, CO 80302 RE: Project “Peacock Place” (Review Numbers LUR2020-00057 and LUR2020-00058) Dear City of Boulder Planning and Development Services Center Staff, We are writing to you regarding the Project “Peacock Place” located at 5691 South Boulder Road (Review Numbers LUR2020-00057 and LUR2020-00058) and specifically the request from the City Planners to place a sewer line from the Kent’s property through Greenbelt Meadows HOA Outlot C (Outlot C). Outlot C has a sanitary sewer easement (highlighted in the Plat below), which connects two city-owned Open Space parcels. This easement is on the southernmost end of Outlot C while the Kent’s property is at the northernmost end of Outlot C. The proposed sewer line would run through areas of Outlot C that are not subject this easement. This Plat also references a fifteen-foot wide utility easement that runs the entire length of the eastern side of Outlot C. The express purpose of this utility easement, as granted by the Association’s original developer, is “for drainage and conveyance of irrigation water from the Dry Creek No. 2 Ditch and for maintenance of the ditch within said easement.” The Kent’s application misrepresented this easement, its limitations, and location with respect to a sewer Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 32 line connection that would run through the middle of Outlot C, well outside of the existing fifteen-foot wide utility easement. The proposed sewer line installation location in the Kent’s application is also contrary to the utility easement purpose – drainage and conveyance of irrigation water – and thus would be an expansion of the scope of the easement without the permission of the Association, its members, or the easement beneficiary Dry Creek No. 2 Ditch Company. Greenbelt Meadows HOA is unable to unilaterally expand the scope of this easement to permit usage for a sewer line. Furthermore, the Greenbelt Meadows HOA community was established before the Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act (CCIOA, C.R.S. §§ 38-33.3-101 et seq.) went into effect in 1992. This means that § 38-33.3-302(1)(i), which allows an Association to grant easements over common community elements, does not apply to Greenbelt Meadows HOA. Because the proposed sewer line would run through areas of Outlot C that are not subject to an existing sanitary sewer easement, the power of the Greenbelt Meadows HOA Board to grant an easement is limited under its Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (Declaration). Specifically, under Section 3.1(a) of the Declaration, the Board may only grant an easement over the community’s common areas to an entity that will provide a utility service to the properties within the Greenbelt Meadows community. The granting of an easement for any other purpose must be approved by the HOA’s members. Similarly, the purpose and conditions of any dedication or transfer of any part of a common area to a public agency, authority, or utility must be approved by at least two-thirds of the HOA members under Section 3.1(d) of the Declaration. Accordingly, at the Annual Meeting of Greenbelt Meadows HOA held on January 28, 2021, the members discussed the proposed sewer line location through Outlot C and the matter was brought up for a membership vote. Greenbelt Meadows homeowners unanimously voted against granting an easement through Outlot C for placement of a sewer line as described in the Peacock Place application currently under review by the Planning and Development Services staff. This letter is intended to provide the City of Boulder formal notice that the request to place a sewer line through Greenbelt Meadows HOA Outlot C has been denied by the HOA membership. The Greenbelt Meadows HOA community and we, the undersigned Board of Directors, fully support the Kent’s desire to improve their property by running a proposed sewer line from their home to the closest sewer connection point located only about twenty feet directly east of the property in Open Space. This placement is the logical and most cost-effective connection point for the Kent’s property and would be minimally disruptive to the existing landscape. We strongly urge you to consider this option as you move forward in the planning process. Please note, this letter is limited to the subject of the proposed sewer line placement through Outlot C. Many of our community members have expressed deep concern with other aspects of the proposed development on this property and we expect you have or will be receiving comments from these property owners regarding the matter. Sincerely, Sarah Davis, President On behalf of the Greenbelt Meadows HOA Board of Directors Kathleen Sutherland Deb Grojean Kenneth Flowe Julia Robinson Attachment F Agenda Item 4 - page 33 MEMORANDUM TO: Open Space Board of Trustees FROM: Dan Burke, Director, Open Space and Mountain Parks Lauren Kilcoyne, Deputy Director of Central Services Samantha McQueen, Business Services Senior Manager Cole Moffatt, Senior Accountant DATE: May 10, 2023 SUBJECT: Draft 2024-2029 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) & Operating Budget _____________________________________________________________________________________ Executive Summary The purpose of this discussion item is to share the Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) Department draft 2024-2029 CIP and provide some context around the 2024 operating budget. The Open Space Board of Trustees (OSBT) will have an opportunity to ask questions to ensure the OSBT is prepared at its July meeting to consider and recommend OSMP’s 2024-2029 CIP, including Lottery Fund funding, for Planning Board and City Council review and approval. Staff will seek recommendations for the CIP and operating budget together at the July business meeting. While this update includes information on the operating budget, a majority of the content focuses on the CIP. Additional information on the draft 2024 operating budget will be shared at the June business meeting. The series of CIP agenda items for the OSBT with opportunity for public review are as follows: •At the April 12 business meeting, staff provided written information on economic conditions, 2022 draft revenue collections, and approach to the 2024 work plan and budget. •This month, staff is presenting the draft CIP budget and some related operating budget details for discussion. •In June, staff will present any updates to the CIP budget, additional information on the operating budget, and revenue projections. •In July, the OSBT will hold a public hearing and make recommendations on the CIP and operating budget for the Planning Board and City Council. Updates to 2023 Budget Adjustment to Base OSMP staff will continue to provide updated information on the previous year’s actual revenues, current year budget, and out year revenue projections as a regular part of the 2024 budget planning process. This information gives a holistic view of the department’s budget as the OSBT reviews next year’s CIP and operating budget for recommendation. As shared during the April business meeting, OSMP participates in the city’s Adjustment to Base (ATB) process, which is a mechanism that allows departments to react to significant changes to budget conditions after City Council budget approval. The “First ATB” is a standard part of the annual budget process. Every April, departments submit ATB requests to be reviewed and approved by City Council in May. Like the Second ATB in the fall, the First ATB allows departments to appropriate revenues and expenditures outside of the annual budget process. Attachment A includes the list of items OSMP has requested for inclusion in the First ATB. The list of ATB items is subject to change as requests are reviewed by the Finance Department and city leadership. Asset Management and Beehive System At the April business meeting, board members requested an update on the department’s asset management efforts. OSMP continues to invest in Master Plan strategy FS.3) Understand total cost of Agenda Item 5A - Page 1 system management, as well as funding capital maintenance according to baseline condition results. The department uses a system called Beehive to manage assets. Beehive and asset management work also consist of partnering with a citywide asset management team to collaborate on data standards, reporting requests (CIP, state reporting, etc.), and streamlining workflows. OSMP will use Beehive to track the lifecycles and operations of assets across 17 categories, or classes. As of the first quarter of 2023, implementation is complete for the following 12 asset classes: Agriculture, Fences/Gates, Water, Facilities, Forestry, Visitor Use Monitoring, Restoration, Trails, Trailheads, Undesignated Trail Restoration, and Fleet. The remaining five asset classes to be implemented are Integrated Pest Management (IPM), Wildlife, Signs, Monitoring, and Properties. Staff will provide an update on asset management efforts at a future business meeting. Budget Development Process OSMP continues to utilize a robust, collaborative work planning process to ensure that the CIP supports the highest priority projects each year. The draft 2024 CIP is the result of months of extensive work by project managers, supervisors, and a cross-functional leadership team to phase, scale, and prioritize projects to ensure the department is meeting commitments to the community as reflected in approved plans. The leadership team considered department priorities guided by the Master Plan, commitments in other existing plans, staff capacity, balance across functions and services, and many other factors in determining which projects to recommend. Many projects reviewed during the initial intake were not ready to move forward, whether they required additional project scoping and/or cost estimating, needed to be phased and funded in appropriate years (i.e. design, permit, construct), or should be better coordinated with another related project before being funded. Additional to the projects recommended in the 2024 CIP, OSMP continues to work on multi-year projects funded in previous budget cycles. This is referred to as capital carryover and runs concurrent with the first ATB process, as outlined in the April business meeting. Therefore, staff capacity in 2024 will be directed towards capital carryover projects, new 2024 capital projects, and a host of programs, ongoing services, and projects funded out of the 2024 operating budget. In 2024, the draft $7,178,209 CIP presented in this memo represents a slight increase of $30,237 compared to the $7,147,972 2023 CIP. This accounts for expected revenue increases in future years from increased sales tax revenues, as well as diversified revenue sources like grants and the recently passed Climate Tax. At this stage in the budget process, OSMP has not yet been informed of the projected 2024 Lottery Fund or Climate Tax allocations to the department, and refinements to the CIP will be made as that information becomes available. While the department expects additional revenue in 2024 over 2023 projections, the dollars proposed in the 2024 CIP will remain at the same level as OSMP seeks to operationalize some funding that has historically been included in the CIP. Staff reviewed the definition of CIP as part of the work planning process. If a high-priority project has elements that are ongoing, contribute to core services, or support the department’s day-to-day work, it will be proposed as an additional operating need in 2024. The OSBT will review proposals to increase or change the operating budget at the June business meeting. Table 1 demonstrates examples of projects that have previously been part of the CIP and will now be proposed as ongoing or short-term operating needs. Table 1: Examples of Projects Historically Funded by CIP & Proposed Operating Budget Adjustments Project Approved 2023 CIP Funding Proposed 2024 Operating Funding Hire Youth Corps. and Contracted Crews for Trail Projects $275,000 $275,000 Native Vegetation Restoration Along Boulder and South Boulder Creeks $100,000 $100,000 Public Safety Improvements: Visitor Safety $50,000 $50,000 Agenda Item 5A - Page 2 Project Approved 2023 CIP Funding Proposed 2024 Operating Funding New Zealand Mudsnail Management Review and Implementation $60,000 $30,000 The amount of funding in the annual OSMP CIP has fluctuated over the last ten years, first decreasing as the department prepared for the reduction of 0.11 percent sales tax in 2019 and the end of the General Fund transfer in 2019. In 2020, OSMP began to plan for CIP increases after the extension of the 0.15 percent sales tax through 2039 via 2019 ballot measure. However, COVID-19 impacted revenue collections citywide, and OSMP participated in citywide requirements to reduce 10% of budget in 2020 and 2021, which impacted the department CIP. In 2022, OSMP was able to program CIP increases utilizing revenues from the extension of the 0.15 percent sales tax increment. Now in 2023, OSMP can begin to support a higher-than-average CIP based on better-than-expected 2021 and 2022 revenues, anticipated revenue recovery from COVID-19, and availability of dollars from the 0.15 percent sales tax increment. Increased revenue projections and diversified funding sources will allow the department to continue funding the 2024 CIP at a similar level as 2023. The proposed projects described in this memo may be subject to some changes based on updated information staff will receive from the upcoming six-year revenue forecast from the Finance Department. Staff will provide a more detailed revenue and economic update at the next business meeting. At this time, OSMP is awaiting further information from the Finance Department on the amount of 2024 Lottery Fund dollars that will be allocated to OSMP. Based on allocation in previous years, the $7,178,209 draft CIP includes an assumption of $428,000 in Lottery dollars. The remaining $6,750,209 will be supported by the Open Space Fund. Additional allocations may be provided to OSMP from the recently passed Climate Tax to support wildfire resilience efforts. These numbers are subject to change as more financial information becomes available. Table 2: Total CIP Funding by Year Across all departments and funds, the city utilizes consistent categories/types to describe capital investments. CIP project types include capital maintenance, capital enhancement, new facility/infrastructure, capital planning studies, and land acquisition. In the past, a significant portion of the annual OSMP CIP was dedicated to land, water, and mineral acquisition. Since 2019, Master Plan guidance updated the direction from the 2013-2019 OSMP Acquisition Plan, and much of the funding for $0 $2,000,000 $4,000,000 $6,000,000 $8,000,000 $10,000,000 $12,000,000 $14,000,000 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Agenda Item 5A - Page 3 acquisition has shifted according to Master Plan priorities, with more of an emphasis on maintaining, repairing, and improving current OSMP assets. In 2020, the department utilized acquisition carryover funding from previous years to support the purchase of Shanahan Ranch. The carryover funding was augmented by $700,000 in 2020 CIP funding, and during the 2021 CIP process it was determined that additional acquisition dollars were not needed to support the acquisition program in the 2021 work plan. In 2022, the department funded the acquisition CIP at $350,000 to ensure adequate dollars were available for the council-approved acquisition of the Boulder County parcels at Sombrero Marsh and a trail easement to support a more sustainable alignment of the soon-to-be-constructed North Sky Trail. Both acquisitions were reviewed by OSBT in 2022. The acquisition CIP is funded at $250,000 in 2023 to support the current year work plan. Through the work planning process, the department determined that additional acquisition dollars will not be needed in 2024. If a high priority acquisition investment arises in 2024 and requires funding beyond the available balance of the carryover acquisition CIP, staff will request funding through the 2024 ATB process. In out years, it is assumed that there will continue to be some base level funding to the acquisition CIP. The amount of funding will be determined annually through the work planning process and based on needs to support any land, water and/or mineral priority acquisitions. Table 3: Total Acquisition CIP Funding by Year Since 2019, the department has prioritized capital maintenance (taking care of what we have) which is consistent with the priorities of the Master Plan. Of the $7,178,209 draft 2023 CIP, $3,712,209 (52%) supports capital maintenance across Master Plan focus areas and all functions and services. For example, funding for maintenance of facilities is proposed in the draft 2024 CIP as a capital maintenance project. Beginning in 2023, OSMP has focused more resources on capital enhancement projects than in previous years. Capital enhancement projects are funded when specific enhancement projects result in improved management or when called for in approved plans. Projected revenue increases in 2023 and 2024 will allow the department to invest more overall dollars in key enhancement projects across the system. Priority improvement projects that addressed actions in plans emerged during the decision-making process, and those projects are proposed as capital enhancements. Examples of capital enhancement projects in the draft 2024 CIP include renovation of trailheads to support needed upgrades, improve accessibility, and enhance interpretive facilities. Table 4: Total CIP Funding by Category (Excludes Acquisition) $0 $1,000,000 $2,000,000 $3,000,000 $4,000,000 $5,000,000 $6,000,000 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029 Agenda Item 5A - Page 4 Master Plan Alignment with 2024 CIP Projects The 2024 budget again incorporates the Master Plan into the CIP. All proposed CIP projects are categorized into one of the five Master Plan focus areas, or central management themes. They are further broken down into strategies under each focus area: •Agriculture Today and Tomorrow (ATT) •Community Connection, Education, and Inclusion (CCEI) •Ecosystem Health and Resilience (EHR) •Financial Sustainability (FS) •Responsible Recreation, Stewardship, and Enjoyment (RRSE) OSMP’s work planning system allows for each project to link to up to three Master Plan strategies, referred to as primary, secondary, and tertiary strategies. During the development process, project managers recorded percentages to assign primary, secondary, and tertiary strategies to each project. This allows OSMP to better represent how dollars align with Master Plan implementation funding. For example, the project “Stockwater Planning for Drought Resilience and Support of Diversified Agriculture” is funded at $60,000 in the 2024 draft CIP and is captured as follows: Table 5: Example of CIP Project Master Plan Strategy Alignment Strategy Alignment Tier Strategy Percent of Project Funding for Strategy Primary 1 ATT.2) Increase soil health and resilience 34% $20,400 Secondary 1 EHR.1) Preserve and restore important habitat blocks and corridors 33% $19,800 Tertiary 2 ATT.4) Protect water resources in a warmer future 33% $19,800 Total 100% $60,000 $0 $500,000 $1,000,000 $1,500,000 $2,000,000 $2,500,000 $3,000,000 $3,500,000 $4,000,000 $4,500,000 $5,000,000 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Capital Enhancement Capital Maintenance Capital Planning New Facility / Infrastructure Agenda Item 5A - Page 5 Master Plan graphs and charts as presented below utilize this methodology to reflect CIP investment by focus area, tier, and strategy. Master Plan alignment will be presented in a similar way during the presentation of the operating budget in upcoming business meetings. Over the five budget years since the Master Plan was approved, Responsible Recreation, Stewardship, and Enjoyment (RRSE) has received the most funding of any focus area, followed by Ecosystem Health and Resilience (EHR) and Agriculture Today and Tomorrow (ATT). The chart below displays the five- year cumulative investment in each focus area since investments were tracked against Master Plan priorities. Table 6: 2020-2024 CIP by Master Plan Focus Area This can then be compared with the integrated budget guidance in the Master Plan, which provides target percentages by focus area over the ten-year Master Plan implementation horizon. In any given year, CIP percentages by focus area will vary based on which priority projects are funded, but the department will ensure that percentages normalize to meet implementation commitments over time. Cumulative investment over a five-year period is consistent with the integrated budget guidance. To highlight key changes from 2023, EHR will receive less funding as a percentage of the total CIP budget in 2024, as many projects related to ecological sustainability will now be proposed under the operating budget as opposed to CIP. This aligns with OSMP’s objective to review the use of CIP dollars and propose ongoing services that support the department’s day-to-day work under the operating budget. Before making this shift to operating in 2024, EHR projects accounted for a majority of CIP in previous years. RRSE will receive increased funding at 37% of the 2024 CIP. The 6% increase in RRSE funding over the previous year supports important investments like renovation of the Marshall Mesa Trailhead site under the project for “New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation.” Cumulative investments over a five-year period are highest in RRSE (30%), followed by EHR (28%). This is consistent with the 10-year Master Plan target to allocate 25-40% of the CIP to EHR projects and 20-35% to RRSE projects. Cumulative five-year investments are consistent with integrated Master Plan guidance with the exception of CCEI. While it is possible that future CIP budgets $8,003,410 $8,339,627 $5,644,220 $1,841,255 $4,308,851 $0 $1,000,000 $2,000,000 $3,000,000 $4,000,000 $5,000,000 $6,000,000 $7,000,000 $8,000,000 $9,000,000 EHR RRSE ATT CCEI FS Agenda Item 5A - Page 6 will reflect increased CCEI investments consistent with Master Plan guidance, we may find that the CIP is not as an appropriate funding mechanism for CCEI projects than originally envisioned as compared to the operating budget. Table 7: 2020-2024 CIP by Master Plan Focus Area (Target Percentages) Focus Areas 10-Year target percentage to inform MP implementation spending 2024 CIP percentage ($7,178,209) Cumulative 2020- 2024 CIP Ecosystem Health and Resilience 25-40%20% 28% Responsible Recreation, Stewardship, and Enjoyment 20-35%37% 30% Agriculture Today and Tomorrow 15-30%22% 20% Community Connection, Education, and Inclusion 10-25%8% 7% Financial Sustainability 10-25%13% 15% Additionally, the draft 2024 CIP categorizes projects as Tier 1, 2, or 3 strategies in the Master Plan. As a reminder, every Master Plan strategy is deemed important and the definition in the Master Plan of each tier is included below: •Tier 1 Strategy: Most important, will be accelerated and emphasized with more staff time and funding, especially in the first few years of Master Plan implementation •Tier 2 Strategy: Next most important, will receive incremental funding and effort as capacity allows •Tier 3 Strategy: Third most important, will receive incremental funding and effort as capacity allows Total 2024 CIP budget allocation by tier is adjusted to remove projects aligned with the Financial Sustainability strategies, since those strategies underpin the work of the other four service areas. Financial Sustainability strategies are not tiered in the published Master Plan. Overall, the investment by tier in the 2024 CIP is consistent with the department goal to prioritize Tier 1 strategies in a fiscally constrained environment, with 73% of funding advancing Tier 1 strategies. Table 8 details draft 2024 CIP funding by Master Plan tier and Table 9 displays this information over a cumulative five-year period. Table 8: 2024 CIP by Master Plan Tier (Excludes Financial Sustainability) Agenda Item 5A - Page 7 Table 9: 2020-2024 CIP by Master Plan Tier (Excludes Financial Sustainability) The department began to show investment by both Master Plan tier and Master Plan strategy for the first time in 2022. Staff received feedback that it is a useful way to communicate how we are investing CIP dollars over time and demonstrates the breadth and depth of the work that is occurring to implement the Master Plan. As a final point of reference to the Master Plan, OSMP is able to show CIP investment by strategy. The 2024 CIP invests in all ten of the ten Tier 1 strategies. In any given year, while a particular strategy may not have certain CIP projects associated with it, it is likely there are programs, actions, and services $4,545,917, 73% $917,740, 15%$767,552, 12% $0 $500,000 $1,000,000 $1,500,000 $2,000,000 $2,500,000 $3,000,000 $3,500,000 $4,000,000 $4,500,000 $5,000,000 Tier 1 Tier 2 Tier 3 $17,001,492, 71% $3,525,633, 15%$3,301,388, 14% $0 $2,000,000 $4,000,000 $6,000,000 $8,000,000 $10,000,000 $12,000,000 $14,000,000 $16,000,000 $18,000,000 Tier 1 Tier 2 Tier 3 Agenda Item 5A - Page 8 funded through the department’s operating budget that support that strategy. Overall, the projects in the draft 2024 CIP fund some level of implementation of 29 strategies in the Master Plan. Table 10: Draft 2024 CIP Funding by Master Plan Strategy Tier Master Plan Strategy Funding in 2024 CIP 1 ATT.1) Reduce maintenance backlog for agricultural and water infrastructure $367,850 1 ATT.2) Increase soil health and resilience $178,400 1 ATT.3) Address conflicts between agriculture and prairie dogs $402,000 1 CCEI.1) Welcome diverse backgrounds and abilities $209,584 1 CCEI.2) Enhance communication with visitors $153,750 1 EHR.1) Preserve and restore important habitat blocks and corridors $881,700 1 EHR.2) Update system plans guiding ecosystem management $25,000 1 EHR.3) Address the global climate crisis here and now $442,100 1 RRSE.1) Assess and manage increasing visitation $1,473,250 1 RRSE.2) Reduce trail maintenance backlog $412,284 2 ATT.4) Protect water resources in a warmer future $87,900 2 ATT.5) Encourage diverse and innovative agricultural operations $221,250 2 CCEI.3) Connect youth to the outdoors $116,300 2 CCEI.4) Support citywide engagement with federally recognized American Indian Tribes and Indigenous Peoples $8,840 2 EHR.4) Reduce undesignated trails $61,700 2 EHR.6) Control invasive species $50,000 2 RRSE.4) Encourage multimodal access to trailheads $371,750 3 ATT.6) Support the success of ranchers and farmers $276,950 3 ATT.7) Integrate native ecosystems and agriculture $8,580 3 ATT.9) Enhance enjoyment and protection of working landscapes $15,000 3 CCEI.5) Foster wellness through immersion in the outdoors $18,750 3 CCEI.8) Heighten community understanding of land management efforts $11,250 3 CCEI.9) Preserve and protect Boulder’s cultural heritage $23,580 3 RRSE.6) Support a range of passive recreation experiences $41,442 3 RRSE.7) Build new trails as guided by past and future plans $126,250 3 RRSE.8) Provide welcoming and inspiring visitor facilities and services $245,750 N/A FS.3) Understand total cost of system management $80,000 N/A FS.4) Take care of what we have $601,400 N/A FS.9) Invest in workforce development and operational needs $265,600 Total $7,178,209 During the 2023 budget planning process, the OSBT requested to see which projects were linked to each strategy in the Master Plan. Attachment B details Master Plan alignment with 2024 recommended CIP projects. Proposed/Recommended 2024 CIP Projects Agenda Item 5A - Page 9 The 2024 CIP projects are listed alphabetically by project and convey which projects are continuations of multi-year efforts, and which projects are new this year. The list also indicates which approved plans support the proposed project. This is provided to demonstrate the interconnectedness of the work being performed. Please note that it is common for project estimates, both in terms of total project cost and cost by strategy, to utilize round, whole numbers. In the citywide budget process, $50,000 is considered a minimum threshold for a capital project, with the thinking that projects less than $50,000 could possibly be funded in the operating budget. In OSMP, projects are funded over several years, and though occasionally CIP funding in a specific year could be less than $50,000, total capital project cost will exceed $50,000. Additionally, depending on the type of project occurring, project managers may utilize different contingency estimates. For example, a cost estimate that is developed in 2023 for a project that will occur in 2024 may factor in increased cost of inputs (e.g., increasing price of concrete), so annual CIP budgets may not be exact. The department continues to work to improve cost estimating. Table 11: Draft 2024 CIP Project Proposed 2024 Funding Initiate/ Continue/ Complete Associated Department Assessment/Plan Climate Strategies and Solutions Implementation $150,000 Initiate Master Plan Facility Maintenance and Enhancements $890,000 Continue OSMP Facilities Assessment Fencing Infrastructure Installation, Maintenance, and Removal $50,000 Continue Visitor Master Plan Fort Chambers/Poor Farm Site Management Plan: Site Evaluation $26,000 Continue Visitor Master Plan Habitat Enhancement: Fish Passage Design at New Dry Creek Carrier on South Boulder Creek $250,000 Continue Master Plan High Quality Trail Network and Reducing Trail Maintenance Backlog $722,209 Initiate Visitor Master Plan and Trail Study Area Plans Irrigation Ditch Maintenance: Mitigate Fuels and Remove Invasive Tree Species $150,000 Initiate Agricultural Resources Management Plan Irrigation Infrastructure Improvements and Maintenance $211,000 Continue Agricultural Resources Management Plan Local Food Farm Sites Improvements $255,000 Continue Agricultural Resources Management Plan New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation $1,655,000 Initiate Visitor Master Plan and Trail Study Area Plans North Trail Study Area Implementation: Wonderland Lake $380,000 Continue North Trail Study Area Plan Prairie Dog Conservation and Management $250,000 Continue Master Plan and Preferred Alternative Approach for Managing Irrigated Agricultural Fields with Prairie Dog Conflict Restoration of Irrigated Agricultural Fields with Prairie Dog Conflict $440,000 Continue Master Plan and Preferred Alternative Approach for Managing Irrigated Agricultural Fields with Prairie Dog Conflict Agenda Item 5A - Page 10 Project Proposed 2024 Funding Initiate/ Continue/ Complete Associated Department Assessment/Plan Restoration of Vegetation, Riparian Habitats, and Wetlands $300,000 Continue Grassland Management Plan Sawhill Ponds Capital Maintenance and Enhancements $1,005,000 Initiate Visitor Master Plan Soil Health Improvement Projects $209,000 Continue Agricultural Resource Management Plan Stockwater Planning for Drought Resilience and Support of Diversified Agriculture $60,000 Initiate Agricultural Resource Management Plan Visitation and Visitor Experience Survey Implementation $75,000 Continue Visitor Master Plan Visitor Communication and Education Enhancements $100,000 Continue Visitor Master Plan Total $7,178,209 The department looks forward to feedback from OSBT at the May business meeting and will consider feedback and edits, as well as information received in the coming weeks from the Finance Department, into the information provided for the June business meeting. Operating and Capital Budget Development Processes Key dates for the budget development processes are included below: Table 12: 2024 Budget Development Milestones Milestone Date OSBT Draft 2024 Work Plan & Budget Update (1st Touch) April 12 OSBT Draft 2024 CIP & Operating Budget Introduction (2nd Touch) May 10 Financial Forecast & Budget Update to City Council May 11 OSBT Draft 2024 CIP & Operating Budget Update (3rd Touch) June 14 OSBT 2024 CIP & Operating Budget Public Hearing and Recommendation (4th Touch) July 12 Planning Board City CIP Hearing August 18 City Council Budget Study Session September 14 City Council Budget Consideration (1st Reading) October 5 City Council Budget Consideration (2nd Reading) October 19 Attachments •Attachment A: OSMP Proposed First ATB Items •Attachment B: Master Plan Alignment with 2024 Recommended CIP Projects Agenda Item 5A - Page 11 Attachment A: Open Space & Mountain Parks (OSMP) Proposed 2023 First Adjustment to Base (ATB) Items Additional Appropriation Amount Description $13,767.00 OSMP received insurance proceeds from the removal of a shed at Boulder Valley Farm due to a collision. The funds will be used in 2023 to restore the shed back to its functionality. $30,000.00 Funding from the US Forest Service Disaster Relief Grant will allow for the purchase of a utility terrain vehicle (UTV), which will allow for more effective noxious weed control on several properties that were affected by recent droughts, including East Beech, Greenbelt Plateau, and Lippincott Ranch. Management efforts will be accomplished with the utilization of this purchased spray UTV. $49,989.00 OSMP received a $49,989 grant from the Colorado Department of Agriculture to support noxious weed mitigation efforts. Dollars will be appropriated to the Vegetation Management budget to support temporary staff costs and supplies as needed to accomplish the work plan. $55,000.00 OSMP received an additional $55,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Agriculture to support noxious weed mitigation efforts in 2023. Dollars will be appropriated to the Vegetation Management budget to support temporary staff costs and supplies as needed to accomplish the work plan. $292,000.00 Colorado Parks & Wildlife awarded OSMP a grant in June 2022 which partially funds Lower Boulder Creek Wetland Restoration. The Lower Boulder Creek project is restoring wetland and riparian habitat on 250 acres of formerly gravel mined OSMP property along Boulder Creek. Construction will be completed in 2023. $72,000.00 The State Fire Assistance Program Grant is awarded through the State Fire Assistance Program and the Council of Western State Foresters. The grant is administered as a subaward through Colorado State University. The grant funded a total of 72 acres of forest thinning in the Enchanted Mesa area for forest health and fire risk reduction. $48,000.00 The Boulder Open Space Conservancy donated $48,000 to OSMP. The funds will be used in 2023 for trail repairs on Mount Sanitas and will support the OSMP Junior Ranger, Volunteer, and Education programs. $300,000.00 As outlined to the OSBT during the February study session on climate and wildland fire programming, OSMP is implementing two consultant-based projects on climate that will be delivering recommendations in 2023 for reducing OSMP's carbon footprint and for improving carbon management and ecosystem resilience on OSMP properties. This request was originally submitted to the Finance Department for consideration in the Second ATB of 2022 but will instead be included in the First ATB of 2023 based on project timing. Further implementation of these recommendations beyond 2023 will be the subject of a 2024 CIP request. However, in order to accelerate this critical work in 2023, OSMP requests an additional $300,000 be appropriated to the Science and Climate Resilience workgroup budget to support existing department projects with de-carbonization and natural climate solutions. This funding will also provide temporary staffing to address a growing list of plant and soil and climate-related field projects. $102,800.33 OSMP received a donation from the Estate of Arthur Moss in the amount of $134,438.13. The requirements of the donation specify the money to be spent on Agenda Item 5A - Page 12 Attachment A Additional Appropriation Amount Description flora, fauna, and/or trail repair. In 2023, these dollars will be used to support wetland restoration projects. $111,767.00 In the wake of the Marshall Fire, OSMP identified the need to increase fuel mitigation along irrigation ditches that are used by the city. During the Second ATB of 2022, OSMP requested to fund one Water Resources Program Specialist position with associated non-personnel expenses to better address debris piles and vegetation along ditches where the city has water rights interests and land ownership and to work on the backlog of maintenance needs on ditches and water infrastructure. This position was approved in the Second ATB of last year, however the 2023 budget had already been approved and did not include this position. This request appropriates the 2023 funds for the approved position. Through the 2024 budget process, the ongoing base budget will be updated to account for future year funding for this position. $15,000.00 In partnership with Jefferson County, OSMP is contributing $15,000 to the Colorado Parks & Wildlife Interagency Trail Courtesy Study. The study will evaluate the effectiveness of visitor information and signage at Marshall Mesa, Table Mountain, and Eldorado State Park to reduce visitor conflicts and enhance the visitor experience. $143,249.87 Funds will be used to develop an ethnographic/education report based on in-person interviews with Tribal Representatives in Boulder to help the city and representatives from American Indian Tribal Nations develop education and interpretation materials that provide accurate, truthful Indigenous Peoples' stories both past and present. This project was called for during 2023 tribal consultation. $75,000.00 In 2022, an OSMP CIP project supported pilot funding for a temporary Wetland Ecologist position to support key projects. This position was filled in 2022. In collaboration with other ecologists, the Wetland Ecologist’s work focuses on conserving, protecting, restoring, managing, monitoring, and evaluating wetland and riparian resources on city-owned and city-managed lands. In 2023, OSMP seeks to continue this pilot position. An ongoing recommendation will be made through the 2024 budget process. $33,493.00 In 2022, the OSMP budget provided pilot funding to support temporary staffing in Education & Outreach with the goals of increasing presence on the land and augmenting Ranger patrol capacity. OSMP will continue this pilot in 2023 and make ongoing recommendations through the 2024 budget process. Funding in 2023 will support additional costs associated with hiring temporary Education & Outreach Representatives and Senior Representative positions. As a presence on the land, Education & Outreach positions welcome visitors, provide information and educational program opportunities, monitor for safety, assist with emergencies, and encourage responsible recreation. $9,000.00 OSMP contracts with Ready To Work (Bridge House) to augment and accelerate the work of staff trail crews to reduce the backlog of trail maintenance across the system. Annual hours are scheduled based on available crew weeks and trail maintenance needs. In 2023, the hourly rate to hire Ready To Work crews has increased by 8%. The $9,600 cost represents the 8% increase to the cost of the contract. Agenda Item 5A - Page 13 Attachment A Additional Appropriation Amount Description $75,000.00 The cost of supplies, materials, and services to perform trail repairs has increased in 2023. This request will appropriate additional funding to account for inflation. An ongoing increase is needed to support additional costs for the program which will be captured through the 2024 budget process. $50,000.00 The cost of supplies, equipment, and services to perform regular trailhead maintenance has increased in 2023. This request will appropriate additional funding to account for inflation. An ongoing increase is needed to support additional costs for the program which will be captured through the 2024 budget process. $16,452.00 OSMP trailheads and facilities staff are now utilized during snow removal or other city closure emergencies, and these funds will be requested ongoing as part of the 2024 budget process. For 2023, OSMP requests funding for staff time to support snow removal, emergency assistance, and other maintenance needs. $97,402.64 In partnership with the Facilities and Fleet Department, OSMP contracts annually to rent vehicles during the height of field season for temporary staff field crews. Vehicles are rented and not purchased because OSMP hires about 200 temporary staff annually for short durations and the vehicles are not needed outside of field season. The cost of rental vehicles has increased for 2023. OSMP will address this funding gap ongoing through the 2024 budget process. $15,000.00 Visitation to the OSMP system has increased 30% over ten years, necessitating year-round maintenance support at trailheads to remove trash, clean restrooms, install and repair fences and gates, and perform other duties. As part of the 2023 budget process, OSMP funded increased temporary staff support for the trailheads program, with overlapping 9-month temporary position terms. OSMP also hired a temporary 12-month Trailheads Crew Lead position to provide day-to-day work direction for the temporary crew. In the 2024 budget process, OSMP will submit budget requests to address shifting business needs ongoing. The department seeks to convert the 12-month temporary Crew Lead to standard in order to ensure staff capacity to manage the work plan and business needs to care for OSMP's network of trailheads. The funds will be used to convert the position to standard ongoing. $15,000.00 In the new compensation structure in 2021, OSMP created a Trailheads Program Manager position to reflect the growing scope and scale of the Trailheads program. This request will activate that existing role within the structure, which has not yet been filled. With increased visitation to the system and in alignment with the Master Plan, the program has expanded to include project and program management beyond day-to-day maintenance needs. With no addition to FTE, OSMP seeks to convert one of its two existing “T4” Trailheads Specialist positions to “P1” Trailheads Program Manager. All appropriate HR practices around competitive application processes will be completed. The funds will be used to convert the position to standard ongoing. $1,619,920.84 Total Requested ATB Note: OSMP continues to work on multi-year CIP projects funded in previous budget cycles, referred to as capital carryover. The amount of capital carryover expected to carry into 2023 is $11,705,635.71. This amount is subject to change, as the data has not been submitted to the Finance Department at the time of this memo. Agenda Item 5A - Page 14 Attachment A Attachment B: Master Plan Alignment with 2024 Recommended CIP Projects Tier Master Plan Strategy and Associated CIP Projects Funding in 2023 CIP 1 RRSE.1) Assess and manage increasing visitation $1,473,250 New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation 812,000 Sawhill Ponds Capital Maintenance and Enhancements 585,000 Visitation and Visitor Experience Survey Implementation 56,250 Visitor Communication and Education Enhancements 20,000 1 EHR.1) Preserve and restore important habitat blocks and corridors $881,700 Habitat Enhancement: Fish Passage Design at New Dry Creek Carrier on South Boulder Creek 200,000 High Quality Trail Network and Reducing Trail Maintenance Backlog 185,100 Irrigation Ditch Maintenance: Mitigate Fuels and Remove Invasive Tree Species 45,000 Irrigation Infrastructure Improvements and Maintenance 32,000 North Trail Study Area Implementation: Wonderland Lake 19,800 Prairie Dog Conservation and Management 125,000 Restoration of Vegetation, Riparian Habitats, and Wetlands 250,000 Stockwater Planning for Drought Resilience and Support of Diversified Agriculture 19,800 Visitor Communication and Education Enhancements 5,000 1 EHR.3) Address the global climate crisis here and now $442,100 Climate Strategies and Solutions Implementation 150,000 New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation 275,000 Soil Health Improvement Projects 17,100 1 RRSE.2) Reduce trail maintenance backlog $412,284 High Quality Trail Network and Reducing Trail Maintenance Backlog 412,284 1 ATT.3) Address conflicts between agriculture and prairie dogs $402,000 Prairie Dog Conservation and Management 100,000 Restoration of Irrigated Agricultural Fields with Prairie Dog Conflict 264,000 Soil Health Improvement Projects 38,000 1 ATT.1) Reduce maintenance backlog for agricultural and water infrastructure $367,850 Facility Maintenance and Enhancements 133,750 Fencing Infrastructure Installation, Maintenance, and Removal 20,000 Irrigation Ditch Maintenance: Mitigate Fuels and Remove Invasive Tree Species 75,000 Irrigation Infrastructure Improvements and Maintenance 110,600 Soil Health Improvement Projects 28,500 1 CCEI.1) Welcome diverse backgrounds and abilities $209,584 High Quality Trail Network and Reducing Trail Maintenance Backlog 42,084 New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation 160,000 Sawhill Ponds Capital Maintenance and Enhancements 7,500 1 ATT.2) Increase soil health and resilience $178,400 Restoration of Irrigated Agricultural Fields with Prairie Dog Conflict 44,000 Agenda Item 5A - Page 15 Attachment B Tier Master Plan Strategy and Associated CIP Projects Funding in 2023 CIP Soil Health Improvement Projects 114,000 Stockwater Planning for Drought Resilience and Support of Diversified Agriculture 20,400 1 CCEI.2) Enhance communication with visitors $153,750 New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation 105,000 Sawhill Ponds Capital Maintenance and Enhancements 15,000 Visitor Communication and Education Enhancements 33,750 1 EHR.2) Update system plans guiding ecosystem management $25,000 Prairie Dog Conservation and Management 25,000 2 RRSE.4) Encourage multimodal access to trailheads $371,750 New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation 176,750 Sawhill Ponds Capital Maintenance and Enhancements 195,000 2 ATT.5) Encourage diverse and innovative agricultural operations $221,250 Facility Maintenance and Enhancements 30,000 Local Food Farm Sites Improvements 191,250 2 CCEI.3) Connect youth to the outdoors $116,300 North Trail Study Area Implementation: Wonderland Lake 108,800 Sawhill Ponds Capital Maintenance and Enhancements 7,500 2 ATT.4) Protect water resources in a warmer future $87,900 Habitat Enhancement: Fish Passage Design at New Dry Creek Carrier on South Boulder Creek 25,000 Irrigation Ditch Maintenance: Mitigate Fuels and Remove Invasive Tree Species 30,000 Irrigation Infrastructure Improvements and Maintenance 13,100 Stockwater Planning for Drought Resilience and Support of Diversified Agriculture 19,800 2 EHR.4) Reduce undesignated trails $61,700 High Quality Trail Network and Reducing Trail Maintenance Backlog 61,700 2 EHR.6) Control invasive species $50,000 Restoration of Vegetation, Riparian Habitats, and Wetlands 50,000 2 CCEI.4) Support citywide engagement with federally recognized American Indian Tribes and Indigenous Peoples $8,840 Fort Chambers/Poor Farm Site Management Plan: Site Evaluation 8,840 3 ATT.6) Support the success of ranchers and farmers $276,950 Fencing Infrastructure Installation, Maintenance, and Removal 15,000 Habitat Enhancement: Fish Passage Design at New Dry Creek Carrier on South Boulder Creek 25,000 Irrigation Infrastructure Improvements and Maintenance 55,300 Local Food Farm Sites Improvements 38,250 Restoration of Irrigated Agricultural Fields with Prairie Dog Conflict 132,000 Soil Health Improvement Projects 11,400 3 RRSE.8) Provide welcoming and inspiring visitor facilities and services $245,750 Facility Maintenance and Enhancements 20,750 Sawhill Ponds Capital Maintenance and Enhancements 195,000 Visitor Communication and Education Enhancements 30,000 Agenda Item 5A - Page 16 Attachment B Tier Master Plan Strategy and Associated CIP Projects Funding in 2023 CIP 3 RRSE.7) Build new trails as guided by past and future plans $126,250 New and Enhanced Trailheads to Support Accessibility, Visitor Experience and Responsible Recreation 126,250 3 RRSE.6) Support a range of passive recreation experiences $41,442 High Quality Trail Network and Reducing Trail Maintenance Backlog 21,042 North Trail Study Area Implementation: Wonderland Lake 20,400 3 CCEI.9) Preserve and protect Boulder’s cultural heritage $23,580 Facility Maintenance and Enhancements 15,000 Fort Chambers/Poor Farm Site Management Plan: Site Evaluation 8,580 3 CCEI.5) Foster wellness through immersion in the outdoors $18,750 Visitation and Visitor Experience Survey Implementation 18,750 3 ATT.9) Enhance enjoyment and protection of working landscapes $15,000 Fencing Infrastructure Installation, Maintenance, and Removal 15,000 3 CCEI.8) Heighten community understanding of land management efforts $11,250 Visitor Communication and Education Enhancements 11,250 3 ATT.7) Integrate native ecosystems and agriculture $8,580 Fort Chambers/Poor Farm Site Management Plan: Site Evaluation 8,580 N/A FS.9) Invest in workforce development and operational needs $265,600 Facility Maintenance and Enhancements 160,000 North Trail Study Area Implementation: Wonderland Lake 105,600 N/A FS.4) Take care of what we have $601,400 Facility Maintenance and Enhancements 450,500 Local Food Farm Sites Improvements 25,500 North Trail Study Area Implementation: Wonderland Lake 125,400 N/A FS.3) Understand total cost of system management $80,000 Facility Maintenance and Enhancements 80,000 Total $7,178,209 Agenda Item 5A - Page 17 Attachment B MEMORANDUM TO: Open Space Board of Trustees FROM: Dan Burke, Director, Open Space and Mountain Parks Jeff Haley, Deputy Director, Trails and Facilities Ilene Flax, Senior Landscape Architect DATE: May 10, 2023 SUBJECT: Gebhard Integrated Site Project Update ________________________________________________________________________ Introduction The purpose of this item is to provide an overview and update on the Gebhard Integrated Site Plan project as it continues into implementation with plan recommendations that are nearing construction and others are still in the final design process. The planning phase of this project began in 2018 with alternatives analysis and was completed in 2020 with the selection of a preferred alternative and management guidance based on board and community input. This preferred alternative outlines specific actions that are to be implemented within the area and can be viewed in Attachment A – Preferred Alternative. Additionally, the complete management guidance that more fully describes the actions can be viewed in Attachment B – Final Management Guidance. Finally, this project includes many details and information that was discussed and presented throughout the public involvement portion of the project and can be reviewed within the project website: Gebhard Integrated Site Project. Currently staff are in the process of implementing the project and this phase requires additional detail to be explored within each action item to develop detailed designs for permitting and construction. The memo will explain the status of the various implementation priorities while outlining any additional information that is being gathered or analyzed and the sequencing of the implementation priorities. Overview The OSMP-managed Gebhard property alongside South Boulder Creek is within a Colorado State Natural Area, a designation that emphasizes the state-wide ecological importance of habitat conservation and restoration in this area. This high-value habitat supports riparian nesting birds, federally listed species, and rare plant communities, and serves as an important movement corridor for other species. The area is also designated as Natural Area within the OSMP managed area designations; a designation that acknowledges that in addition to high ecological values this area supports important recreation use, and it is also in close proximity to adjacent development. As an example, neighboring community members have enjoyed using this space to walk along and access South Boulder Creek and other community members use the corridor daily for biking, walking, and running. Specifically, staff have managed access to the creek and habitat improvements in this area through native plantings, erosion control, signage, and fencing. These approaches have sought to improve habitat quality and improve visitor awareness of the importance of riparian natural resources while meeting community desires for creek access. Despite these efforts, undesignated trails along the west side of South Boulder Creek may impact riparian habitat that includes habitat for Preble’s meadow jumping mouse, a federally listed species. Another federally listed species – the Ute ladies’-tresses orchid is known to occur within the area. In addition, a globally rare mesic tallgrass community is impacted by patterns of use, as are wetlands and a population of the Northern leopard frog, a Colorado Tier 1 Species of Greatest Conservation Need. Agenda Item 5B - Page 1 Based on existing guidance in the 2010 Grassland Ecosystem Management Plan and the 1998 South Boulder Creek Area Management Plan, the current Gebhard Integrated Site Project updates and confirms a sustainable management approach for the future. Staff have worked closely with community members to develop alternative approaches for managing this area and to select a preferred alternative that best meets project goals and objectives. The overall goals for the project include: 1) Restoration of riparian habitat along the west side of the creek between East Boulder Community Center and South Boulder Road as part of the ongoing larger restoration project along all South Boulder Creek; and 2) Providing access to the existing designated trail system on the east side of the creek in a way that aligns with the neighborhood’s interests and values. Implementation of the Gebhard Integrated Site Project preferred alternative paused in 2020 when New Zealand Mudsnails were discovered in South Boulder Creek and a management response plan to the snail’s presence was developed and reviewed by the OSBT and has since been implemented. Current Implementation Plan Staff are now developing implementation plans for the Gebhard project that detail the design described in the OSBT-reviewed 2020 preferred alternative. The preferred alternative provides staff management guidance to follow in making improvements to the area and ensuring the goals and guidance are met. However, the implementation process takes time and requires that staff review more detailed information and develop detailed plans that adhere to all applicable regulatory guidance while ensuring the goals of the community are being upheld as well. describes The following summarizes the status of the various recommendations outlined within the preferred alternative: •BRIDGE: The proposed bridge will connect the west side of South Boulder Creek near the Greenbelt Meadows Neighborhood to the east side designated trail system. This location was selected to minimize grading and impacts to the area. The final design and appearance of the bridge will be like the existing bridge just to the north near the East Boulder Community Center. Staff are working with Boulder County permitting to ensure that the bridge does not impact the floodplain or other regulatory requirements. •DESIGNATED PUBLIC ACCESS: A three-foot width crusher fines trail will provide an accessible connection between the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood and the new bridge. This will be located along the southern route of the existing UNDESIGNATED trail through that area. •HOWARD DITCH CROSSING: The designated public access trail will cross the Howard Ditch on an accessible metal grate sitting on the existing concrete drainage pan crossing the ditch. •DESIGNATED CREEK ACCESS: Access to the creek at the bend in South Boulder Creek will include bank stabilization that includes both structural and vegetation-based erosion control measures to support creek hydrology and people accessing the water. There are additional creek access locations downstream. All other designated access points will remain open while other informal access points to the creek will be closed for restoration of the riparian habitat. •RESTORATION: Restoration efforts will restore undesignated trails on the west side of South Boulder Creek with native grasses both along the east and west sides of the creek as shown in the green color on the preferred alternative plan primarily on the west side of the creek to the north and south of the proposed bridge. Three large crack willow trees will be removed, along with treatment and removal of teasel and privet. There will be new cottonwood trees, shrubs, native grasses, and plantings that support the wetland and riparian systems through the area. Agenda Item 5B - Page 2 •STEWARDSHIP: Volunteer projects that engage community members in active stewardship of the area may include seed collection, invasive species removal, and volunteer ranger activities. •FISH PASSAGE: A new fish passage structure will replace the existing concrete dam with a series of boulder steps that will allow fish to move freely through South Boulder Creek. •55th CONNECTOR: A trail connection from the new bridge west to 55th Street will create a west side trail loop without further impacts to South Boulder Creek. This route will require a new crossing of the Howard Ditch, and a pedestrian crossing of 55th Street. Those elements will activate the existing multi-use trail on the west side of 55th Street as an integral component of the South Boulder Creek corridor and allow designated and improved access to the west. •55th STREET HABITAT ENHANCEMENT: Landscape along the west side of 55th Street can extend the character of the South Boulder Creek corridor. New plantings and turf replacement can support both habitat and a compelling visitor experience. This proposal will utilize the parkway area along 55th between the multi-use path and the roadway. •GRASSLAND GATHERING AREA: To support education and outreach efforts primarily to connect youth to nature, an area within the grassland east of the South Boulder Creek Trail that is dominated by smooth brome has been identified as a gathering area. Here, visitors can sit on benches or boulders, enjoy the views, and connect with the grassland experience. Plantings will support the mosaic vegetation preferred by the Preble’s Meadow Jumping Mouse, a listed species whose habitat we value. This area will be located on the east side of the creek and east of the existing path between the new bridge and the existing bridge while also allowing visitors to a place to step off the path when multiple users are passing by at once. •RAINGARDEN: The drainage pan along the north edge of the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood flows directly to South Boulder Creek. To improve South Boulder Creek health, the OSMP is exploring options for landscape-based water treatment at this location that will improve water quality of stormwater leaving the residential area. •SEPARATED PATHS: The preferred alternative identified the need for a separate path along the trail from the existing bridge and the proposed new bridge to the south. The community and staff have expressed concern for safety along the South Boulder Creek Trail, particularly in relation to the multiple uses and the current narrow corridor, and staff are dedicated to increasing safety on the trail for all allowable uses. North of the existing bridge there are two separate paths that accommodate a variety of uses and visitors along the corridor. However, while traveling south of the existing bridge, all trail users are funneled into one path that is narrower than the north and creates a pinch point. Additionally, use of this corridor has shifted in relation to the opening of the US 36 bikeway in recent years to the south, and staff are working to understand the impacts of increased use, visitor conflict and how this might best be addressed. Staff have not identified a separated pedestrian trail route on the east side of South Boulder Creek that is responsive to final management guidance as the area is very narrow, constrained and has a high occurrence of wetlands and sensitive vegetation. Staff are in the process of working with transportation staff in the city and county as well as performing more data collection on the visitation of the corridor and user trends in terms of modes of travel, direction of travel, visitation numbers, etc. The design process for this separated path is a creative problem-solving methodology, where additional information becomes available as the process progresses. As more information becomes available about visitor use, development of design elements might include: o A safe crossing of South Boulder Road that will encourage cyclists to use 55th Street and cross South Boulder Road with a designated crossing that is identified within the Low- Stress Walk and Bike Network. Staff will work with City and County transportation to utilize existing bike and multi-use trail infrastructure to create this alternative and perhaps Agenda Item 5B - Page 3 reduce volume of users on the South Boulder Creek Trail with the stretch of the Gebhard project. o Widening the existing trail to a more multiple use standard and ensuring safe and consistent surfacing and clear sight lines throughout the corridor. o Creating an alternative alignment of the path through the corridor that is still sensitive to resource values. Schedule and Sequence of Improvements OSMP has identified a construction sequence that closes the most sensitive areas for mudsnails and Ute Ladies’ Tresses first but not until the new bridge and connector trails are in place. This sequence will begin with construction of the new South Boulder Creek bridge and trail connection from the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood to the bridge. The grassland gathering area and creek access will be included in this initial construction as well to provide visitors with an experience of the east side of the creek. Following the opening of the bridge, restoration will include areas disturbed by construction as well as the undesignated trails south of the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood. These areas will be delineated with new fencing to identify areas where visitors must remain on trails only and will only be closed once the bridge is in place and access can be achieved to the east side of the creek and west to the 55th Street connection. During this initial construction, staff will continue to coordinate with City and County transportation departments to provide alternative bike routes that encourage bike through-traffic from the South Boulder Creek Trail. As described previously, staff will develop visitor data on bike use from the 36 corridor and undesignated trails to support an informed approach to the remaining elements of the implementation plan. Along with providing a safe crossing of South Boulder Road at 55th Street, the next stage of the construction sequence will include closing the undesignated trails on the west side of South Boulder Creek north of the new bridge once the new bridge is opened. However, this undesignated trail will not be Agenda Item 5B - Page 4 formally closed until a safe trail experience can be ensured on the east side of the creek through the options outlined previously. Opportunities for Public Information OSMP plans to host a community update to share plans with neighbors following the May OSBT meeting. Project updates will continue to be provided in many forms such as the Field Notes email, social media updates and OSBT memos as necessary when project milestones are reached. Staff are committed to ensuring the community is updated and aware of all the sequencing and implementation steps to ensure a successful project. Attachments •Attachment A: Preferred Alternative •Attachment B: Final Management Guidance Agenda Item 5B - Page 5 Attachment A Agenda Item 5B - Page 6 Final Management Guidance The Gebhard ISP included the following final management guidance, developed at three stages of the ISP process. The first column identifies each component of guidance under three Master Plan strategies: Ecological Health and Resilience; Community Connections, Education and Inclusion; and Responsible Recreation, Stewardship and Enjoyment. The next columns identify the source of each element of guidance in the ISP planning process. The final column provides the status of each element in the implementation plan. Final Management Guidance South Boulder Creek Area Management Plan (1998), Grassland Ecosystem Management Plan (2010) Community Feedback on Preferred Alternative (2019) OSBT Guidance (2020) May 10, 2023: Implementation Plan Notes Ecological Health and Resilience Continue removing invasive species and replacing with native plant species. X This work is ongoing. Restore wetlands and riparian areas in the project area, including closing off a section of undesignated trails and informal creek access points on the west side of the creek. X Wetland, riparian and upland areas will be restored in relation to undesignated trail closures, construction impacts, and mitigation efforts. Continue removing barriers to fish passage and improving habitat in South Boulder Creek. X Fish passage design is underway. Monitor ecological health over time to track progress towards project objectives. X This work is ongoing. Commit to construct and open the bridge and separated paths on the east side, before restoration work begins, before additional fencing is installed, and before closing restoration areas to public access. X OSMP has not identified a separated pedestrian trail route on the east side of South Boulder Creek that is responsive to final management guidance. OSMP will continue to find solutions to access by: 1. Developing an alternate route for commuter bikes and others to reduce conflicts on the Attachment B Agenda Item 5B - Page 7 South Boulder Creek Trail. While this does not create a pedestrian-only separated trail, it does provide two trails through this section of the South Boulder Creek corridor: One soft- surface, meandering trail on the east side of South Boulder Creek (the existing South Boulder Creek Trail), and a second, hard surface multi-use trail on the west side of South Boulder Creek along 55th Street. 2. Creating approximately ½ mile of pedestrian- only trail from Greenbelt Meadows to the new bridge and connection to 55th Street. 3. Creating a grassland gathering area on the east side of the South Boulder Creek Trail that provides visitors with a place to pause and enjoy the unique qualities of this place. The proposed sequencing plan closes social trails south of the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood along with bridge construction. The social trails north of the new bridge will be closed with the remainder of implementation plan elements. Final Management Guidance South Boulder Creek Area Management Plan (1998), Grassland Ecosystem Management Plan (2010) Community Feedback on Preferred Alternative (2019) OSBT Guidance (2020) May 10, 2023: Implementation Plan Notes Community Connections, Education and Inclusion Collaborate with the community to consider volunteer opportunities for implementing stewardship projects. X This work is ongoing. Attachment B Agenda Item 5B - Page 8 Update on-site educational programs and facilities to build understanding of protected species and site restoration, connect youth with nature, and inspire collective stewardship with community members. X These programs will be facilitated by having designated sites at creek access and the grasslands gathering area. Expand restoration efforts to include stewardship projects on the east side of the creek, including invasive weed management and fencing. X This work is ongoing. Final Management Guidance South Boulder Creek Area Management Plan (1998), Grassland Ecosystem Management Plan (2010) Community Feedback on Preferred Alternative (2019) OSBT Guidance (2020) May 10, 2023: Implementation Plan Notes Responsible Recreation, Stewardship and Enjoyment Design and construct a new pedestrian bridge across South Boulder Creek. X The bridge location and initial floodplain coordination has been completed. Designate and improve a trail to connect the Greenbelt Meadows neighborhood with the new bridge and the designated trail system on the east side of the creek. X Approximately 700 linear feet of social trail will be formalized as a 3’ width crusher fines path. Separate a pedestrian-only path from the multi-use path within the existing trail corridor on the east side of the creek (between the new bridge and the existing bridge). X As described above, OSMP has not identified this path. Enhance creek access at designated points, including stepping-stones and improved access points along the east side of the creek. X Social access at the bend in the creek will include bank stabilization that includes both structural and vegetation-based erosion control measures to support both creek hydrology and people accessing the water. Attachment B Agenda Item 5B - Page 9 Explore the possibility of a future trail connection to 55th street in coordination with other city departments, ditch companies and other stakeholders. X This connection is planned for construction with the closure of the trails north of the new bridge. Address safety concerns along the South Boulder Creek trail, east of the creek, as related to higher speed bike travel. X This work is ongoing. Assess the feasibility of wider buffers between the separated pedestrian and multi-use paths on the east side, which may include adjusting the current fence line along the eastern project boundary, if and where feasible. X Wider buffers and moving the fence line are not feasible. These considerations would undermine the functionality of the ecosystems being preserved. Enhance western views of the mountains and align the separated pedestrian path west of the multi-use path to support peaceful walks along the creek. X The grasslands gathering area will provide a location to enjoy views to the west. Explore low-profile design options for the new bridge that respect neighborhood character and minimize impacts to the floodplain. X The bridge will be like the one east of the East Boulder Community Center. Clarify that bikes will not be allowed on or west of the new bridge. X Signage will be included to convey this management objective. Develop ways to limit and manage vehicular access in the future restoration area west of the creek. X The 55th connector will provide a designated route for ditch and maintenance access. Attachment B Agenda Item 5B - Page 10 MEMORANDUM TO: Open Space Board of Trustees FROM: Dan Burke, Director, Open Space and Mountain Parks Heather Swanson, Interim Deputy Director Resource and Stewardship, Ecological Stewardship Senior Manager Andy Pelster, Agriculture and Water Stewardship Senior Manager Victoria Poulton, Prairie Dog Ecologist Eric Fairlee, Ag Land Restoration Senior Program Manager Lauren Kolb, Soil Health Senior Program Manager DATE: May 10, 2023 SUBJECT: Written Information: Evaluation of Prairie Dog Management on Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) Irrigated Agricultural Lands - Background and Current Status ________________________________________________________________________ BACKGROUND: Conservation and management of prairie dogs on open space has long been an item of intense community interest. While prairie dogs are a keystone species in native ecosystems, they also conflict with many human land uses including agriculture. As a result, finding an appropriate balance between conservation and conflict management can be challenging. Importance of Irrigated Lands Because of the high levels of plant production possible by providing supplemental water, irrigated lands have been identified as OSMP’s best opportunity areas to support successful agricultural operations across the OSMP landscape. The city has made significant investments in the purchase of land and water for agricultural purposes and the construction and maintenance of water delivery infrastructure to support irrigated agriculture throughout the OSMP land system. The loss of the ability to conduct agriculture on irrigated fields due to prairie dog colonization threatens the viability of agricultural operations on portions of the OSMP s ystem. Importance of Prairie Dogs Black-tailed prairie dogs have far-reaching effects on the grassland that they inhabit, and their presence provides prey and landscape structure necessary for many associated species that would not otherwise be present (e.g., burrowing owls, American badgers). Because of these far-reaching effects, prairie dogs are often considered a “keystone” species. In recognition of the importance of prairie dogs in native grasslands, the city has made large investments over the years in the conservation of habitat for prairie dogs and their associated species. Prairie dog investments have gone beyond acquisition and management of habitat. They are one of only a very few wildlife species that the city has spent funds to actively manage both at the individual and population level. For example, the city has invested considerable funds in the relocation of prairie dogs to viable habitat with low prairie dog occupation and strategically distributes vaccine to sylvatic plague to help safeguard populations in conservation areas. The Nature of Conflicting Land Use Written Information – Item A – Page 1 Burrowing and feeding by prairie dogs in irrigated fields are often incompatible with applying irrigation water, cutting hay, growing vegetables, and conducting associated agricultural practices. The delivery of irrigation water and operation of agricultural equipment is made difficult or impossible because of prairie dog burrows and burrow mounds. Prairie dogs graze and clip hay and pasture vegetation that is intended for use by livestock and create bare ground conducive to the germination and spread of noxious weeds. Irrigation, plowing, mowing, and harvesting hay can also have adverse effects on prairie dogs. Once prairie dogs are robustly established in an irrigated field, for example, farmers and ranchers often stop using the field to grow hay because prairie dog mounds can damage their equipment and make haying difficult or impossible. Eventually the farmer may see no benefit from continuing a lease arrangement with OSMP. In these cases, properties are removed from the agricultural lease program and are instead managed by the OSMP agricultural stewardship staff who respond within available resources to the concerns of neighboring landowners for the spread of noxious weeds and of the prairie dogs themselves. In addition to the direct loss of lease revenue, agricultural production, and the degradation of the land for future agricultural use; irrigation infrastructure can also be degraded from the direct effects of prairie dogs or from lack of on-going use and maintenance. Irrigation requires specific knowledge of a property gained over years and is time consuming work. OSMP staff capacity to irrigate lands is limited because the agricultural tenants have been relied upon to manage most irrigated land. Irrigated agricultural fields typically support vegetation communities that are reliant on the increased water availability delivered by ditches. These systems are especially vulnerable to removal of irrigation water which typically leads to a rapid decline in vegetation conditions. Healthy pasture and hayfield grasses are very effective at holding soil, however this ability declines and is eventually not effective as vegetation conditions degrade over time without appropriate agricultural management. Increased bare ground, even in situations of blowing or otherwise eroding soil, provides opportunities for invasive plant species to become established. These plants do not typically bind soil as well as a healthy hayfield or pasture and create additional management challenges and costs for the city. Consequently, OSMP has tried to limit the overlap of irrigated lands and areas managed for prairie dogs through planning, policy development and on-the-ground actions. The Grassland Plan established prairie dog management designations which provide extensive areas across the Open Space system for the conservation of prairie dogs and associated species, but then also called for the removal of prairie dogs from most irrigated agricultural land. OSMP Planning and Management: Conserving Both Prairie Dogs and Local Agriculture Since 2010, prairie dog management across the OSMP land system has been guided by the OSMP Grassland Ecosystem Management Plan. In addition, the OSMP Agricultural Stewardship Plan (2017) identifies strategies to maintain and enhance the city’s agricultural operations, integrate agriculture with cultural and ecological stewardship and to enrich the community’s opportunities to connect with agricultural activities on OSMP land. Despite these overarching guiding documents, the topics and issues around OSMP prairie dog management as well as management of prairie dogs on private properties within the city receive substantial community interest and input. Following community and citywide conversations related to a private property prairie dog removal project in 2016, City Council asked the city to convene a community group to discuss prairie dog management across the city. The Prairie Dog Working Group (PDWG) convened and undertook 2 years of work. In the spring of 2019, the working group’s recommendations were being advanced to the Open Space Board of Trustees (OSBT) and council for recommendation and approval. During the public hearings, some members of the community, including OSMP tenant farmers and ranchers, expressed concern that Written Information – Item A – Page 2 the overlap of prairie dogs on irrigated agricultural lands was making agriculture impractical and creating operational hardships. They asked that the city examine this situation and develop ways to improve it. During the meetings at which the OSBT and City Council acted on the PDWG recommendations, they also recommended and directed staff to further evaluate these concerns. Specifically, the OSBT and City Council identified that conflicts with city’s prairie dog management which largely avoided use of lethal control on OSMP, and viable agricultural operations had affected OSMP’s ability to fully meet the Charter purposes of Open Space and had contributed to soil degradation and soil loss. In response to the OSBT and City Council direction to examine ways to reduce conflict on irrigated lands, staff undertook an expedited process to review prairie dog management on irrigated agricultural lands during 2019 and 2020. OSBT/ City Council Guidance on Management of Prairie Dogs in Irrigated Agricultural Lands On August 11, 2020, City Council approved the staff/OSBT-recommended “preferred alternative” for prairie dog management on irrigated agricultural lands within a defined “project area” in the northern portion of the OSMP land system (project area shown in Attachment A). The preferred alternative included removal of prairie dogs from irrigated lands using a combination of relocation and in-burrow humane lethal control, steps to exclude prairie dogs from recolonization, a commitment to the restoration of soil condition and agricultural productivity as well as changes to citywide policies to allow damage of prairie dog burrows from typical agricultural activities so long as that damage is limited in the depth of disturbance. The City Council memo with the full details of the preferred alternative can be viewed here: https://documents.bouldercolorado.gov/WebLink/DocView.aspx?id=173530&dbid=0&repo=LF8PROD2 This approach was built from actions recommended by community members, including agricultural tenants and peer agencies, as well as staff’s experience managing prairie dogs and previous attempts to restore agricultural lands in the presence of prairie dogs. The preferred alternative involves tradeoffs, including impacts to prairie dog associated species through direct mortality with lethal control in burrows, loss of current prairie dog habitat and loss of prey for predator species using these properties including raptors, badgers, coyotes and others and prairie dog barriers on a large scale that create fragmentation and present barriers to movement for a variety of wildlife. The preferred alternative included evaluation criteria for prioritizing which properties would be managed first to maximize success and benefit while minimizing these ecological trade-offs. The direction from OSBT and approved by City Council included (dependent on budget) that OSMP would annually undertake: •Approximately 30-40 acres of prairie dog removals by relocation from OSMP irrigated fields (and up to 20 individual prairie dogs from other city priority projects) to OSMP receiving sites. •Approximately 100-200 acres of prairie dog removals in the project area by in-burrow humane lethal control. •Both relocations and lethal control would be followed first by the installation of barriers (fences) in appropriate locations to reduce subsequent recolonization by neighboring prairie dog colonies and the need for relocation and humane lethal control, and then second by the restoration of soils and vegetation. •Previously prohibited agricultural activities on OSMP irrigated fields resulting in damage to prairie dog burrows would be allowed. Written Information – Item A – Page 3 IMPLEMENTATION Implementation from 2020 – Present Staff began removing prairie dogs from irrigated agricultural land in 2020 by relocating 53 acres of prairie dogs from the Johnson, Dawson, and IBM properties to OSMP’s southern grasslands. Full scale implementation of the new preferred alternative management approach began in 2021. Relocation efforts in 2021 and 2022 resulted in 79 acres or prairie dogs being relocated to OSMP’s southern grasslands from the northern project area. Lethal control as a tool for prairie dog removal was available after City Council’s approval of the OSBT and staff recommended preferred alternative in August of 2020 and has been used in 2021 and 2022 to remove a total of 216 acres of prairie dogs from irrigated land. Altogether, a total of 348 acres of prairie dogs have been removed from irrigated agricultural land in the northern project area in the past three years. Prairie dog removals (both lethal control and relocation) in the northern project area have generally been focused on the lease areas with the greatest amount of prairie dog occupation / irrigated agricultural land conflict. During that time, approximately $174,200 has been spent on contracted lethal control services and $155,500 has been spent on contracted relocation services. The preferred alternative recommends the installation of barrier fences in appropriate locations to reduce subsequent recolonization of the removal areas, and to reduce the need for ongoing lethal control and/or relocation efforts following removal. A combination of barrier designs has been installed in the project area depending on adjacent prairie dog occupation. Metal barriers that are three feet tall and buried one to three feet have been installed where it is anticipated that prairie dogs are expected to continue to occupy land adjacent to the colonies identified for removal. A total of 3,180 feet of metal barrier has been installed in the project area. Vinyl barriers have been installed where prairie dogs are adjacent to or very close to the removal site and the adjacent site is being actively managed for prairie dog removal, or at sites where it is anticipated that a more solid and visual barrier will only be needed for the expected lifespan of the vinyl barrier material (7-10 years). To date, only 955 feet of vinyl barrier has been installed. Most of the barriers that have been installed have been a chicken wire mesh barrier that is installed on new or existing fencing and includes an approximate two-foot apron that is staked to the ground surface to discourage burrowing under the barrier. The chicken wire mesh barrier design is the most cost-effective barrier type. Just over 49,900 feet of chicken wire mesh barrier has been installed. A total of 54,050 feet of barriers have been installed at a cost of approximately $577,100. All fields where prairie dogs have been removed undergo some form of restoration after prairie dog removal. These efforts can be as simple as flattening the burrows to allow for effective irrigation to full restoration requiring soil amendments, keyline plowing, and seeding cover crops and perennial vegetation. Repairing or improving the existing agricultural infrastructure, including fences and irrigation structures, is also a critical management activity to return some removal sites to active agricultural production. Commonly, the bulk of restoration activities occur the year following prairie dog removal. Highly disturbed sites will likely take three to five years to return the site to its full agricultural potential. Staff have been working closely with the agricultural tenants to develop restoration plans and implementation schedules and in some cases, implement some restoration activities. Restoration work by the ag land restoration team in 2021 and 2022 has resulted in 72 acres being fully restored while 92 acres are in progress. Restoration work on an additional 198 acres is planned for 2023. Expenditures for the full suite of restoration activities and equipment have totaled $198,000. Additionally, staff have been experimenting with land management and restoration practices that improve soil health and agricultural land conditions in the presence of prairie dogs without relocation or lethal control efforts. These techniques include key line plowing, diverse cover crop seedings, targeted grazing, and various soil amendments. Several cover crop species have been identified that grow robustly in the Written Information – Item A – Page 4 presence of prairie dogs, such that prairie dogs move off-site or to unvegetated portions of the property. Targeted grazing and well-managed irrigation have shown to be successful in improving vegetative cover as well. The techniques described above have been successful on a limited basis to moderately improve site conditions or temporarily displace prairie dogs from a portion of an agricultural field. It is hoped that the most successful practices can be more widely implemented to slow degradation at a minimum or improve soil and vegetation conditions on sites where removal is not feasible. UPCOMING STAFF WORK Evaluation of Program and Future Year Planning When OSBT and City Council provided OSMP with direction to pursue removal and restoration efforts within the project area, it was discussed that evaluation of implementation would be ongoing and used to inform planning and decision making. Due to uncertainty about the rate of success, changing conditions on the ground with prairie dog populations, variable weather, etc., staff determined that three years was the longest timeframe that they were comfortable planning for. After this initial period, staff intended to review the program and identify if it was meeting the intended goals, if changes or tweaks were necessary, and to determine what the next three-to-five-year implementation phase might look like. This program requires extensive staff and budget resources, so it is important that staff is confident that future implementation is as effective and efficient as possible. With changing conditions, staff also want to ensure that they are continuing to appropriately balance the benefits of restoration of irrigated agricultural land with the ecological tradeoffs of prairie dog removal. Staff are working to complete this review in 2023 to inform the management work to occur in 2024 and beyond. 2023 management plans have been discussed with the public and the board and communicated to council and are being implemented as planned. These plans follow the direction from OSBT and City Council in 2020. Based on experience with implementation since 2020, staff has identified some areas that warrant re- evaluation for future management planning: Geographical scope of project area The area identified in 2019-2020 as the “project area” included the agricultural fields and leased lands on OSMP with the most prairie dog occupied irrigated agricultural land. While there were other areas of conflict, it was not as widespread and impactful as the conflict in the identified project area. Prairie dog populations have continued to grow outside the project area and the extent of conflict has increased on irrigated agricultural land. This along with extensive successful removals from properties within the project area for the past three years significantly reducing the impact to highly impacted agricultural tenants, means that conflict in the northern project area may no longer fully encompass the most cost effective or highest priority conflicts for irrigated agriculture on OSMP. Evaluating whether the project area still makes sense as the sole focus of this work to provide the most benefit to the OSMP agricultural program on irrigated agricultural lands is being examined. Individual Property Challenges and Opportunities Agricultural/Irrigation Conditions on Properties: Each agricultural property within the project area has a unique history, topography, landscape context, and agricultural past. During the analysis in 2019/2020 to determine what management should occur within the project area, staff used the term “irrigable land” to describe areas prioritized for prairie dog removal. This designation included currently irrigated fields, historically irrigated fields, recently or otherwise, properties with currently accessible/usable water rights, properties without available water rights, properties with intact, well-maintained irrigation infrastructure, properties with deficient or non-existent irrigation infrastructure, properties with topography that allows Written Information – Item A – Page 5 for easy irrigation of the entire property, and properties with more challenging topography for flood irrigation. In addition, the level of prairie dog occupation in the surrounding landscape leads to highly variable needs for exclusion barriers and variable likelihood of success in long-term prairie dog exclusion. To address this diversity within and between properties and the inherent differences in feasibility of restoring productive, irrigated agriculture to each, staff is evaluating each individual property to determine what the most beneficial, effective, and realistic plan is for future management. This includes evaluating what other work (water rights, irrigation infrastructure repair/replacement, etc.) might be required to ensure successful restoration following prairie dog removal. Staff is expecting that priority tiers for management will be identified and those that offer the best opportunity for restoration and long- term prairie dog exclusion will be placed in the highest priority tier and those with additional challenges in successively lower tiers. This can help staff to evaluate where prairie dog management and follow-up restoration will be most successful over the next several years. The goal remains to reduce the prairie dog / irrigated land conflict and to improve soil health, but to do so on the highest priority agricultural lands in the most cost-effective manner. Ecological Conditions on Properties: In the last three years, prairie dog populations have shifted on the landscape and other wildlife communities have moved around. Some of these changes include establishment of a new Golden Eagle nest adjacent to OSMP land, new sightings, and use of prairie dog colonies by a badger or badgers (designated a sensitive prairie dog associate in the Grassland Plan), and new information on things like raptor concentration areas and elk use in the area. These changes to the ecological conditions warrant evaluation and consideration for any modifications to plans that need to be made to ensure appropriate balance of agricultural restoration goals and native wildlife protection goals. Methods/ implementation of prairie dog removal In burrow lethal removal: OSMP has had success working with contractors to provide in-burrow lethal prairie dog control. However, contractor availability can be limited, lengthening the time required to complete each year’s work. In addition, in-burrow lethal control costs much more than anticipated in the original evaluation completed by staff. To determine what the most cost-effective and efficient way to complete the work is, staff is calculating the cost, capacity implications and feasibility of completing the work with OSMP staff and equipment vs. continuing to work with outside contractors to complete the removals. Relocation: Relocation has been successful in moving many prairie dogs to the OSMP Southern Grasslands Preserve where prairie dog occupancy is desirable. Up until now, the Southern Grasslands Preserve has offered OSMP the best opportunity to relocate prairie dogs that were trapped/removed from irrigated agricultural lands in the project area. In fall of 2022, prairie dog populations in the Southern Grasslands surpassed minimum conservation goals of 10% occupancy for the first time since 2008. This is an exciting development in system-wide prairie dog conservation. The Grassland Ecosystem Management Plan, in addition to laying out the conservation goals, provides criteria that apply to potential receiving sites for relocated prairie dogs. In Grassland Preserves, the criteria for occupancy include relocation into Grassland Preserves UP to 10% occupancy. At that point, relocation is intended to cease so that prairie dog populations have room to grow and shift around the landscape while protecting important native grassland and other plant communities and species that do not thrive in prairie dog occupied areas. As a result of this new development in the availability of receiving sites on OSMP, staff is evaluating what options exist for receiving sites, whether they are likely to be feasible, and what to do if no receiving sites are currently available or become unavailable in future years. Alternate methods of removal: Developments in relocation feasibility may change the ability of OSMP to rely on relocation for a portion of prairie dog removals on irrigated agricultural lands. As such, Written Information – Item A – Page 6 alternatives such as trapping and donating prairie dogs to raptor rehabilitation or ferret recovery efforts will be considered. Although this was not included as a tool to be used in the original direction from City Council and OSBT, it warrants re-evaluation and an update of the information available for consideration. Relocation methods: Relocation as undertaken by the City of Boulder according to direction from the Prairie Dog Working Group includes installation of artificial burrows when intact natural burrows are not available. Because this and other aspects of relocation can create disturbances and impacts to native prairie areas, staff are always considering ways to minimize impacts while maintaining relocation success. Evaluation of whether alternative methods are available and feasible or if small changes can be made to existing methods to minimize disturbance will be included in current staff evaluations. Barriers: Through barrier installation over the last 3 years, staff members have gained an understanding of what designs and methods are most effective and cost efficient. Staff will evaluate how to best use barriers in upcoming years to have the most success in excluding prairie dogs from areas after removal while striving to minimize impacts to non-target species of wildlife, particularly in large, native grassland habitats. Co-existence options: Staff have been working with lessees and partners to implement a variety of approaches to reducing impacts of prairie dogs to agricultural production while prairie dogs remain on the property or part of the property. Staff will consider what options exist or new techniques to try for properties currently with prairie dogs, or where prairie dog removal is unlikely to occur. NEXT STEPS Staff will continue work on evaluating the above factors to inform a recommendation for future implementation efforts including any suggested changes or tweaks to the current program. June: Staff will return to OSBT at the June 12 meeting with a Matter from the Department including discussion of conclusions reached in evaluating the above topics, any additional issues that arose in the evaluation and staff preliminary recommendations for any modifications to the current program for implementation beginning in 2024. July: Staff will take into consideration feedback received from the board at the June meeting and develop a final staff recommendation to be brought to the July 14 meeting for a public hearing and recommendation from the OSBT. Fall: Staff will work with City Council to provide any necessary updates or items for their consideration (will depend on scope of any changes recommended). December: Staff will develop preliminary plans for specific 2024 implementation, including any changes or refinements to the preferred alternative, and present these to the community at the annual prairie dog update meeting. MASTER PLAN STRATEGIES ATT.3) ADDRESS CONFLICTS BETWEEN AGRICULTURE AND PRAIRIE DOGS ATT.2) INCREASE SOIL HEALTH AND RESILIENCE Attachments: •Attachment A: Project Area as defined in 2020 for Removal of Prairie Dogs from Irrigated Agricultural Lands •Attachment B: Prairie dog removal sites in Project Area since 2020 Written Information – Item A – Page 7 Project Area as defined in 2020 for Removal of Prairie Dogs from Irrigated Agricultural Lands Attachment A Written Information – Item A – Page 8 Map showing removal areas since 2020, including removals planned for 2023. Attachment B Written Information – Item A – Page 9 MEMORANDUM TO: Open Space Board of Trustees FROM: Dan Burke, Director, Open Space and Mountain Parks Brian Anacker, Science and Climate Resilience Sr. Manager Chris Wanner, Vegetation Stewardship Sr. Manager Kerry Webster, Wildland Fire Sr. Program Manager DATE: May 10, 2023 SUBJECT: Written Information: Update on Community Wildfire Protection Plan ___________________________________________________________________ Executive Summary Wildfires are a natural occurrence in Colorado’s forested and grassland ecosystems, but recent years have seen an increase in the frequency, extent, and impact of wildfires. In fact, 15 of the top 20 largest wildfires in Colorado have occurred in the last decade alone (according to the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control). Boulder County has recently experienced several significant wildfires, including the Fourmile Canyon Fire (2010), Cold Springs Fire (2016), Calwood Fire (2020), Lefthand Canyon Fire (2020), Marshall Fire (2021), and NCAR Fire (2022). These events have highlighted the pressing need to expand community planning, preparedness, response, and recovery efforts. This memo outlines the city's intention to update its Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) in 2023-2024. The CWPP aims to identify and prioritize areas that require hazardous fuel reduction treatments and recommend appropriate types and methods of treatment to protect at-risk communities and critical infrastructure. It also addresses structural ignitability reduction measures and other matters related to wildfire response, hazard mitigation, community preparedness, and structure protection. The city's current CWPP was last completed in 2007 and is overdue for an update. A current CWPP is necessary to ensure eligibility for state and local grants. Additionally, revisiting the CWPP will provide staff and community with the opportunity to incorporate the latest information and current understanding of the wildland-urban interface. Community engagement will also be conducted to gather local perceptions about wildfire risk and mitigation efforts. Analysis Wildfire Management and the City of Boulder The City of Boulder implements wildfire preparedness efforts across the 72 square miles of open space and the 25 square miles within the municipal boundary, as well as the watersheds that contribute to the city's drinking water supply. Earlier in 2023, the City of Boulder staff provided an overview of their approach to wildfire management in the City Council information packet (Attachment A) and corresponding presentations. Attachment A outlines the city's efforts in three main wildfire resilience strategies: Resilient Landscapes, Fire Adapted Communities, and Wildfire Response. Some of the programs and actions under these three core strategy areas include forest, grassland, and agriculture management; improving the urban canopy; strengthening building codes; public education and outreach; safeguarding critical infrastructure; evacuation and public notification planning; wildfire response planning, trainings, and equipment; early detection; and incident response. Attachment A also Written Information – Item B – Page 1 highlights the need to update the city's Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) to ensure it remains current and effective in reducing the risk and impact of wildfires on the community. What is a CWPP? A Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) is a collaborative planning effort between communities and wildfire management agencies to address the risk of wildfire in and around communities. The Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA) is a federal law from 2003 that promotes the development and implementation of local CWPPs. The HFRA requires the identification and prioritization of fuels reduction opportunities across the landscape, making recommendations to reduce structural ignitibility, assisting community fire suppression capabilities, and consulting with stakeholders. In 2007, the City of Boulder developed a CWPP (Attachment B) that covered the 46,000 acres of Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) land outside the municipality, as well as the surrounding areas and communities that could potentially be affected by wildfires or mitigation efforts on City land. However, the CWPP is due for an update as it is essential for the COB to update their CWPP to ensure it remains relevant and effective in identifying the current wildfire risk to the community and identify the actions that need to be taken to protect life safety, infrastructure, other values at risk identified in the updated plan. The 2023-2024 CWPP update In early 2023, the COB staff issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) to select a consultant who will lead the update of the CWPP. The selected consultant will work closely with the COB staff, including Brian Oliver from Boulder Fire and Rescue, Kerry Webster from OSMP, and several staff teams. The COB is currently finalizing the contract negotiations with the selected consultant. It's worth noting that Boulder County and Mt. View Fire Rescue are also updating their CWPPs. The three agencies are likely going to utilize the same consultant which will help to promote coordination and minimize duplication of efforts. Moreover, the agencies are regularly communicating with each other to facilitate coordination throughout the CWPP update process. Draft CWPP Update Goals and Objectives The draft CWPP update goals are: 1.Enhance life safety for residents and responders. 2. Mitigate undesirable fire outcomes to property, infrastructure, and the water supply. 3.Mitigate undesirable fire outcomes to the environment and quality of life. The draft CWPP update objectives are: 1.Use a scientific analysis of the fire behavior potential of the study area to identify areas of vulnerability to establish an approximate level of wildfire risk in terms of spread, severity and post-fire flooding and debris flows. 2. Identify and quantify factors that mitigate undesirable fire effects to the Values at Risk (create hazard levels). 3.Group Values at Risk into "communities" that represent relatively similar hazard factors, and therefore have similar recommendations to create fire adapted communities. 4.Recommend and prioritize specific management/mitigation actions, such as grazing, increased forest thinning, and other fuel reduction strategies that will reduce wildfire spread, severity and impact to the identified Values at Risk by creating resilient landscapes. 5.Align with existing city-wide management plans and resource management objectives. 6.Engage and educate the community on wildfire related topics and risks. Written Information – Item B – Page 2 By achieving its goals and objectives, the CWPP update can help to reduce the risk and impact of wildfires on the community, safeguard critical infrastructure and resources, and promote the overall health, safety, and well-being of residents and the environment. Additionally, the update will help to create fire-adapted communities by improving community awareness and promoting public action to mitigate hazards. Community Engagement The CWPP update will be a collaborative effort that incorporates local perspectives through community engagement. The engagement opportunities may include various methods such as open houses, community meetings, joint agency meetings, surveys, websites, social media engagement, and presence at public events like the Boulder Farmer's Market. The exact number and nature of these engagement opportunities are yet to be determined, but the schedule section below will provide an early indication of the planned activities. By involving the community in the planning process, the CWPP update can ensure that local perceptions and concerns about wildfire risk and mitigation efforts are incorporated into the plan. It is the intent to bring back the information to the OSBT, other boards, and City Council as appropriate. Updated Preparedness and Risk Analysis The CWPP update will provide a comprehensive review of the city's current preparedness and mitigation efforts related to wildland fire. This will include an overview of emergency notification and evacuation resources, existing plans, as well as ongoing efforts to mitigate the risks of wildfires. A critical component of the CWPP update will be the development of a community risk analysis that categorizes and ranks individual neighborhoods based on overall wildfire risk. This analysis will consider factors such as fuel type, potential fire behavior, burn probability, and community values to be protected. The analysis will use science-based geospatial modeling to evaluate potential fire behavior under different weather scenarios, including moderate and extreme conditions. Additionally, the analysis will incorporate the City's "Wildfire Home Assessment" data where feasible and available. By conducting this risk analysis, the CWPP update will enable the city to better understand and prioritize wildfire risks, allowing for more effective and targeted mitigation efforts. Develop Mitigation Strategies and Actions Based on the community risk analysis, the CWPP update will identify specific opportunities for mitigation and response efforts. These opportunities may include projects to reduce fuel loads in forested and grassland ecosystems on all city-owned and managed properties, such as forest thinning, grazing, ditch maintenance, noxious weed removal and suppression, mowing, and prescribed fire. The CWPP update may also recommend infrastructure additions and enhancements, such as sprinkler lines, mobile fire equipment caches, and public-facing signage. Strategies for engaging with neighbors and the public, such as coordinating with homeowners' associations and implementing neighborhood fuels projects, may also be recommended. Additionally, the CWPP update may recommend updates to building codes, as well as specific public education and outreach efforts. The plan may also identify potential sources of funding to implement the recommended projects. Schedule The CWPP update project was launched in March 2023 and is scheduled to run until May 2024. The specific schedule details are yet to be determined and will depend on the availability of the consultant and the input from COB staff. Community engagement events are tentatively planned for May 2023, October 2023, and April 2024. However, the timing and purpose of these events are subject to change. Written Information – Item B – Page 3 OSMP Involvement As previously mentioned, Boulder Fire and Rescue is leading the CWPP effort, and several city departments will participate. OSMP's Wildland Fire Sr. Program Manager, Kerry Webster, will serve as the primary representative for OSMP and gather input and expertise from OSMP staff. The OSBT will receive frequent updates on the CWPP, and it will be included as an agenda item for a future OSBT meeting. Attachments •Attachment A: Resilience Information Packet (IP) •Attachment B: COB CWPP 2007 (available here: City of Boulder CWPP) Written Information – Item B – Page 4 INFORMATION ITEM MEMORANDUM To: Mayor and Members of Council From: Nuria Rivera-Vandermyde, City Manager Michael Calderazzo, Fire Chief Dan Burke, Director OSMP Brad Mueller, Director Planning and Development Services Mike Chard, Director ODM Edward Stafford, Interim Chief Building Official, P&DS Joe Taddeucci, Director Public Works – Utilities Alison Rhodes, Director Parks and Recreation Joanna Crean, Director Facilities & Fleet Jonathan Koehn, Director Climate Initiatives Date: February 16, 2023 Subject: Citywide Wildfire Resilience Efforts EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The City of Boulder has a long history of building and developing programs, staff expertise, and partnerships related to wildfire resilience efforts. Resilience efforts are embedded within the work that staff does every day. At an April 26, 2022 Study Session, staff provided council with details of some of these efforts and at this study session staff committed to providing additional information for council related to the city’s wildfire resilience efforts. This memorandum identifies and describes the specific efforts related to the three goals identified in the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy document -- Resilient Landscapes; Fire-Adapted Communities; and Safe and Effective Wildfire Response. Some of the programs and actions under these three goal areas described in this memo include forest, grassland and agriculture management; the urban canopy; building codes; public education and outreach; critical infrastructure; evacuation and public notification; wildfire planning, trainings, and equipment; early detection; and incident response. These efforts are meant to increase the resilience of the community that lives, works, and visits the City of Boulder. Page 1 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 5 While the city has long been working on wildfire resilience, the climate crises and the numerous events over the past ten years have prioritized the need to expand community planning, preparedness, response, and recovery efforts. The issue of climate-related resilience, especially in the context of wildfire, has become an urgent citywide need and priority. Therefore, this memo also describes efforts to identify and implement opportunities to enhance city investment in resilience efforts specific to wildfire and the climate emergency, including the need to update the city’s Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP). The CWPP identifies and prioritizes areas for hazardous fuel reduction treatments, recommends the types and methods of treatment that will protect at-risk communities and essential infrastructure, recommends measures to reduce structural ignitability, and addresses other issues related to wildfire response, hazard mitigation, community preparedness, and structure protection. In addition to this memo, staff is preparing and will provide council with more written information, as well as a staff presentation, on wildfire resilience when council considers and discusses the upcoming Special Adjustment to Base (Special ATB). The Special ATB is expected to be considered and discussed at the March 2, 2023 council meeting and will, among other things, incorporate dollars from the recently voter-approved Climate Tax (ballot measures 2A and 2B) into a new “Climate Tax Fund” and appropriate the funds into the city’s 2023 budget. BACKGROUND Climate Change and Boulder Wildfires Wildfires are a natural component of Colorado’s forested and grassland ecosystems. However, the frequency and extent of wildfire have increased due to drought conditions and warming temperatures associated with climate change and declining forest health. In fact, new research 1 suggests that the threat of wildfires will increase exponentially across Colorado in the next 30 years. According to recent studies, the recent wildfires — the most destructive in state history — were likely made worse by the effects of climate change, including extremely dry conditions and long stretches of record warm weather. In 2022, Boulder County experienced double the annual average of red flag fire weather days compared to previous years, reflected by strong winds, dry thunderstorms, low humidity, and low fuel moisture. Moreover, 15 of the top 20 largest wildfires in Colorado have occurred in the last 10 years (Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control). Boulder County has experienced several significant wildfires in the past 12 years: Fourmile Canyon Fire (2010), Cold Springs Fire (2016), Cal-wood Fire (2020), Lefthand Canyon Fire (2020), Marshall Fire (2021), and NCAR Fire (2022). In response, wildfire operations have shifted from a seasonal to year-round effort. A quote from FEMA’s recent National Preparedness Report2 puts the recent Marshall Fire in a national context: “Climate-driven drought and higher temperatures have intensified wildfires across the Western U.S. Between 1979 and 2020, human-driven climate change was the main driver of fire weather in this region, causing twice as many fires beyond regularly observed variability. In California, ten of the costliest wildfires in loss of life and property occurred after 2015, mirroring the rise in global temperatures and severe droughts. Similarly, the 1 Climate change set the stage for the devastating Colorado wildfires (axios.com) 2 https://www.fema.gov/sites/default/files/documents/fema_2022-npr.pdf Page 2 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 6 Marshall Fire, which burned nearly 1,600 acres of Colorado in December 2021 and prompted over 30,000 people to evacuate, was among the most destructive in the state’s history, destroying more than 1,000 homes and 30 commercial structures.” Wildfire Management is part of the City’s broader Resilience Strategy Like many cities and communities across the country and around the world, Boulder is adjusting to a “new normal,” where the effects of climate change are becoming increasingly apparent. And like residents of other cities that have recently experienced a severe natural disaster, resilience is perceived as preparing for the kinds of events that are magnified by climate change. As described in the City of Boulder’s Resilience Strategy 3, “Boulder’s natural hazards are tightly linked, necessitating a comprehensive and integrated approach to risk mitigation. Droughts stress the city’s ecosystems, helping accelerate the damage of pests to forests, thereby increasing the fuel for wildfires, and consequently denuding slopes and increasing flash flooding risk. But this cycle itself is not linear; each event builds on another and sets the stage for even more complex interactions. Therefore, to address these interlinked hazards, activities and programs must be well coordinated, using a systemic approach to reduce multiple risks at the same time and prepare communities to handle disruptions of any kind”. Boulder’s resilience efforts related to wildfire are a multi-faceted, cross-departmental, cross- jurisdictional endeavor that must include ongoing efforts to reduce the chance of future fires, improve wildfire preparedness, plan to handle emergencies, respond to the emergency, and recover from the impacts of the emergency. There is no clear solution nor marker that describes when a region has “arrived” at ideal point-in-time wildfire and disaster resilience. As with any risk, the goal is to reduce the wildfire threat as much as possible keeping in mind the principal objectives of saving lives and property as well as the need to maintain and enhance ecosystem health and biodiversity. As our environment and community continue to experience the effects of climate change, we as a community must adapt and learn. ANALYSIS The city’s wildfire preparedness efforts involve multi-agency partnerships and span the 72 square miles of open space and the 25 square miles within the municipal boundary, as well as the watersheds contributing to the city’s drinking water supply. Identifying values at risk is key to addressing resilience through mitigation, preparedness, robust response, and coordinated recovery. Life Safety and Homes, Commerce and Infrastructure, Recreation and Lifestyle, Habitat Effectiveness & Environmental Resources are the areas of concern highlighted in the Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) from 2007. The purpose of this analysis is to highlight Boulder’s current wildfire resilience activities. Outlined below are summaries of how the city is mobilizing resources to address the growing threats from wildfire. The summaries are organized around the three National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy goals: Resilient Landscapes, Fire-Adapted Communities, and Wildfire Response. 3 The City of Boulder Resilience Strategy provides an overview of Boulder’s resilience accomplishments, as well as outlines current and future resilience projects and goals. Development of this plan was supported by the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities initiative. Page 3 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 7 Resilient Landscapes: Landscapes are resilient to fire-related disturbances in accordance with management objectives. For Boulder, working towards resilient landscapes is a primary tool to lower wildfire risk and promote the recovery of healthy ecosystems. Forest Management The City of Boulder has been a leader in maintaining and managing healthy forests, both in urban and wildland contexts, and managing for wildfire in Boulder County for more than 20 years. Healthy, diverse forests are inherently more resilient to wildfire than forests that lack diversity in tree species, tree age, and spatial heterogeneity. In 1999, Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) and Boulder Fire’s Wildland Division collaborated to develop the Forest Ecosystem Management Plan (FEMP). The FEMP identifies the need to address forest health and the risk of wildfire on city-owned OSMP lands. It established a framework for on-the-ground management and outlined specific treatment areas and management objectives to meet forestry goals. Since the adoption of the FEMP, OSMP has built and has recently enhanced internal staff capacity to implement thinning and prescribed burning projects, established a variety of monitoring efforts to track treatment success and inform adaptive management, and established ongoing partnerships across the county to advance forest management goals. Active forest management is a key focus of the city’s efforts to protect the community, infrastructure, drinking water supplies, wildlife habitats, and recreational destinations. Since the FEMP was adopted, OSMP has thinned more than 2,500 acres and secured more than $600,000 in Resilient Landscapes: Landscapes are resilient to fire-related disturbances in accordance with management objectives. Safe & Effective Wildfire Response All jurisdictions participate in making & implementing safe, effective, efficient risk-based wildfire management decisions. Fire-Adapted Communities: Human populations and infrastructure can withstand wildfire without loss of life and property. Page 4 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 8 grant funding to expand forest health and wildfire mitigation project implementation. Utilities has been partnering with local and state entities to implement forest health projects upstream from Barker Reservoir and in the immediate vicinity of critical water infrastructure. City staff are partnering across departments to increase grant procurement and coordinate on project implementation. Grasslands and Ag Lands The city has also completed and adopted several other system-wide management plans that address ecological resilience in the face of changing climate conditions. OSMP’s Grassland Ecosystem Management Plan and Agricultural Resource Management Plan call for direct, on the ground, science-based management of both OSMP’s grassland ecosystems and working lands. Efforts include non-native species control, prescriptive fire and grazing, prairie dog management, native habitat restoration, and actions aimed at improving soil health. For example, in the NCAR area, prescriptive grazing using cattle on OSMP lands is helping to contain the non-native grass, Tall Oatgrass. During the NCAR fire, the reduced biomass of Tall Oatgrass from cattle grazing likely reduced the flame lengths; this management activity, when combined with recent tree thinning in forest stands, helped allow fire fighters to contain the NCAR fire. Since the Marshall Fire, OSMP staff have been working to evaluate the potential wildfire risk associated with fuel accumulations along ditches and address these risks through direct fuels management efforts. All of these techniques can improve ecosystem resilience and decrease fuel loads that contribute to extreme wildfire behavior. Urban Canopy The Forestry team within the Parks and Recreation Department is tasked with managing the urban canopy, including public trees within city parks, as well as city rights-of-way. As of 2018, the Urban Forest Strategic Plan guides the management of the urban tree canopy to fostering resilience against stressors, including drought and increased temperatures. Strategies within this plan seek to maintain the existing healthy, mature canopy, and ensure no net loss of canopy through specific management and policy approaches. While not called out as a wildfire resilience strategy, rotational pruning of urban trees, as well as removing dead and dying trees, functionally reduces fuel loads throughout the city. Treatment and removal of trees impacted by diseases and pests also removes fuel. Climate Tax Fund Enhancements For this National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy goal area, the Climate Tax Fund will be used in 2023 to expand the scope and speed at which fuels management efforts are completed on city lands, including forest thinning, prescribed burns in forest and grasslands, weed management, and ditch fuel management. For more information, please see the 2/16/23 Special ATB Memo. Fire-Adapted Communities: Human populations and infrastructure can withstand wildfire without loss of life and property. Page 5 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 9 Building Codes The City of Boulder routinely adopts and enforces a full set of codes that regulate buildings and construction in the city (see Boulder Revised Code Title 10). Most of these codes are based upon model building codes developed by the International Code Council (ICC), with local amendments to address issues specific to the Boulder community. An example of local amendments is the citywide prohibition of wood roof coverings and the requirements for Class A (most restrictive) roofing requirements. The ICC model codes are updated on a three-year cycle and the city generally adopts every other cycle of these codes. Boulder most recently adopted the 2018 set of codes, which includes the International Wildland-Urban Interface Code (IWUIC). The purpose of the IWUIC is to regulate the use, condition, and construction of buildings (including decks) within wildland urban interface areas to mitigate the risk associated with the spread of wildland fires into the interface area as well as to minimize the potential spread of structure fires into wildland fuels. The code requires new construction and addition/remodels to homes within the identified interface area to meet additional regulations beyond the standards found in the general construction requirements of the city’s building code. These additional regulations include fire resistant materials, underfloor areas, roof coverings, eaves, rain gutters, windows, and ventilation openings. The degree of fire resistance depends on several factors in the code, including available water supply for firefighting, the fuel hazard, and the number of days of critical fire weather. Most areas in the interface area in Boulder require 1-hour fire resistance materials. In addition to construction standards, the IWUIC requires vegetation management plans as a part of building permit applications in the interface areas. The IWUIC, along with the rest of the adopted suite of building codes, are enforced through multiple mechanisms. The primary means of enforcement is the requirement for building permits for construction in the city. The permit process includes staff review of plans to determine compliance with all applicable codes prior to issuance of the permit to allow construction. During construction, projects are inspected to determine compliance with the approved plans and codes. Wildfire Erosion and Sediment Transport Tool The city partnered with the Colorado Forest Restoration Institute to develop the Wildfire Erosion and Sediment Transport Tool. The pre- and post-wildfire planning tool allows the city to model hypothetical or actual wildfires in the source water watersheds to estimate potential post fire erosion and sediment transport to drinking water intakes, to identify effective in-stream and hillslope stabilization methods to minimize post-fire impacts, and to estimate cost for recovery. Public Education and Outreach Boulder Fire-Rescue offers both Curbside and Detailed Home Assessments to the community. Curbside assessments are completed by uniformed Fire personnel during business hours from the viewpoint of the street, sidewalk, or public property, and they do not access private property. These initial curbside assessments are an operational tool to gather a general impression of how well each home is prepared for a wildfire event to assist in resource deployment. This is placed on a public facing website to inform the community about the basic level of risk. City of Boulder homeowners Page 6 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 10 and renters who wish to improve their curbside assessment rating, or to learn more about how to better prepare their home against the threat of a wildfire, are encouraged to schedule a free detailed assessment. Detailed Wildfire Home Assessments are in high demand and create an excellent opportunity for the department to interface with the community and provide resources to create resilience and other aspects of fire safety education. Any home in the city may request an Assessment, though there are 1400 homes within the city’s current Wildland Urban Interface area. Of those, 862 (61%) Curbside Assessments have been completed. 289 (20%) Detailed Home Assessments have been completed with 131 being completed in 2022. A special emphasis is being placed on neighborhoods and HOA’s that can be completed as a group to foster preparedness and resilience at a community level. Boulder’s Fire-Rescue Community Risk Reduction division focuses on the prioritization of risks, threats, and hazards, followed by the implementation and evaluation of strategies to lessen their impact. In collaboration with city Communications and Engagement, Boulder Fire-Rescue was able to add a full time Public Information Officer (PIO). This position is utilized to amplify risk reduction, public education, and outreach efforts through social media and media interaction. Across the organization, Boulder’s PIOs have proven to be instrumental in effective and informative at bilingual media relations and communication. Critical Water Infrastructure and Treated Water Delivery Capability Analysis The city imported critical treated water infrastructure locational information into the U.S. Forest Service’s wildfire fighting database. This may allow the U.S. Forest Service to better protect key water assets in the event of a wildfire. City staff also assessed water infrastructure risk in the WUI to evaluate several wildfire scenarios and understand available treated water delivery capabilities. The Utilities water system transmission study identified how treated water can most effectively be used in the event of a wildfire. Conventional water delivery systems are typically sized to fight structure fires, not wildfires. Climate Tax Fund Enhancements For this National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy goal area, the Climate Tax Fund will be used in 2023 to accelerate wildfire risk home assessments and create financing and grant tools to assist homeowners and businesses. Funding will also be used update wildfire preparedness information and distribute it widely. For more information, please see the Feb. 16, 2023 Special ATB Memo. Safe and Effective Wildfire Response: All jurisdictions participate in making & implementing safe, effective, efficient risk-based wildfire management decisions. Evacuation and Public Notification Systems After the Marshall Fire event, the Office of Disaster Management (ODM) implemented the Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) system, which issues alerts via cell towers to all cell phones within a specified area. WEA is a way to increase access to all community members, commuters, and visitors that have not signed up for emergency alerts. The city utilized this system for the first time for the NCAR fire. However, the WEA reach exceeds the necessary audience, which has the Page 7 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 11 potential to clog evacuation routes, leading to potentially dangerous scenarios. Given this, the decision about whether to utilize WEA must be made carefully and is the responsibility of the Incident Commander. The City of Boulder currently owns 11 Mass Alert Siren Sites that are part of a larger county wide system operated by the City of Boulder and Boulder County Sheriff’s 911 Public Safety Answering Point. This system complements the city’s other alert and warning tools and allows alerts to reach the public. The city is looking to upgrade to current technology capabilities and move to a more sustainable siren system. Updating the siren system will ensure 24/7/365 operation of an alert and warning tool used for wildfires, floods, and other life/safety hazards in the city. To augment both the public safety disaster response and the outfacing community evacuation process, the city has implemented Zonehaven. Zonehaven is a cloud-based software platform that uses critical data and modeling capabilities to deliver simple, usable insights to help emergency responders, communities, counties, and states prepare for and successfully respond to emergency situations. Zonehaven integrates with WEA, Everbridge, Waze and other mass notification systems. This platform is currently in use in central and southern California and Colorado Springs. The platform has a public education and outreach component that will be integrated with emerging community engagement and education efforts. Water For Firefighting As mentioned above, water infrastructure systems are typically sized to fight urban structure fires, not wildland fires. Using realistic fire scenarios, in 2021 Utilities and Fire Department staff evaluated treated water system performance and ways to maximize potable water delivery in the event of a wildland fire. This evaluation concluded that the city’s treated water infrastructure performs well even under the high-stress, high-demand of the wildland fire planning scenarios. The evaluation identified several improvements, such as piping upgrades and water storage capacity improvements, that can be implemented over time to optimize and increase system performance. These are being considered as part of long-range planning for the capital improvement program. (For more information, see p. 9 of the Sept 2022 Water/Utilities Resilience Information Packet.) Structure Protection Plan (SPP) This document was produced to assist in the development of objectives, strategies, and tactics in protecting structures in and immediately adjacent to the municipal boundary of Boulder. The SPP also provides guidance on ordering and placement of structure protection resources. While no document can replace the training, practice, experience, and judgment of qualified fire professionals, this structure protection plan serves as a starting point. It provides a common operating picture for all resources assigned to protect structural values within the city. This document also outlines contingency actions and resources needed to defend structures. It is important to remember that these structure protection resources are not the only resources required during a wildland incident. The best way to protect structures is to control wildland fires when they are still small. Resources will need to be shifted between suppression and structural protection duties based on current fire conditions and the judgment of either the incident commander or the operations section chief. This document is an intelligence packet that assists incident commanders, operations section Page 8 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 12 chiefs, structural protection specialists, division supervisors, group supervisors, taskforce leaders, and strike team leaders in formulating a plan based on current fire conditions, forecasted weather conditions, and available resources. It should not be thought of as a cookbook of what must be done, but what could be done. Wildland firefighting and structural protection/defense requires judgment based on many years of actual firefighting experience. Boulder Fire-Rescue’s Wildland Division creates operational pre-plans called Structure Protection Guides all along the Boulder Wildland Urban Interface (WUI). Staff, Equipment, and Training for Response Upon employment with the city all firefighters are required to complete a structure fire academy. The entry level firefighter academy consists of 640 hours of training (didactic and psychomotor) in the various skills required to serve the community. Forty hours of this training program is specifically dedicated to wildland firefighting. To successfully complete this section, all firefighters must pass written exams, field exercises, demonstrate fire shelter deployment, and complete the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) Arduous Work Capacity Test – Pack Test (3-mile walk with a 45-pound pack in 45:45 or less). Additional wildland and incident management qualifications are obtained through completing additional classroom training and field deployments to actual incidents through the NWCG. Annually, firefighters participate in approximately 210 hours (per person) of continuing education training. Sixteen hours of their annual training is wildland-specific. Advanced wildland qualifications require additional incident deployments during the qualification period (three-year cycle). The department invests 1,600 hours of Wildland training for firefighters annually. Field training was key to the positive outcome at the NCAR fire. Wildland training had already occurred at the specific NCAR location, so the muscle memory involved with response was fresh for the responding crews. In 2021, a $100,000 investment was made to ensure all Boulder Fire-Rescue personnel had individually issued wildland firefighting personal protective equipment. By issuing equipment to all firefighters, the department made it possible for staff to return during their scheduled time off and be able to operate safely at a wildland incident. Previously there was only enough equipment to ensure that on-duty personnel were equipped. There is still a need for additional equipment redundancy. Firefighting equipment used in the suppression of a wildfire is left on the scene until the fire is controlled. This means that critical equipment could still be in use should another incident occur. This need has been identified and is part of the 2023 workplan. Early Detection In a collaborative effort with Boulder County, city staff are participating in a pilot program to evaluate the effectiveness of an automated camera system for fire detection. The program is with a company called PANO. This pilot provides three cameras with 360 views in strategic locations throughout the county. These cameras use artificial intelligence and a 24/7 monitored support center to detect heat or smoke. When the cameras are alerted, an operator at the support center confirms and sends an alert to the users. The focus is for early detection and faster decision making due to the real time information provided by the cameras. It is yet to be determined if continued use or expansion will be warranted. Page 9 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 13 Climate Tax Fund Enhancements For this National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy goal area, the Climate Tax Fund will be used in 2023 to bring new tools for better data collection on fuels and weather to enhance response and upstaffing decisions, an important step to a more data-driven response. For more information, please see the Feb. 16, 2023 Special ATB Memo. Strategic Partnerships The City of Boulder has been a key player in a variety of collaborative efforts focused on ecological health and wildfire mitigation. In 2020, the city signed an MOU with local, state, and federal stakeholders to develop a shared vision for the future of forest and wildfire management in the “Boulder County Fireshed.” city staff are also in regular communication and partnership with a large host of groups working on fire resilience, such as the Noco Fireshed, the Watershed Center, the Boulder Watershed Collective, Colorado State Forest Service, Ember Alliance, St. Vrain and Lefthand Water Conservancy District, U.S. Forest Service (USFS), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), and The Nature Conservancy (TNC). Fire response is also bolstered by agreements with fire protection districts that have city-owned and managed lands in their response areas. It is a part of the agreement that each district provides fire service to the identified city-managed lands. When an incident starts, incident response begins at the local level and expands as the capabilities of the local agency are forecasted to be exceeded. Should an incident be forecasted to expand beyond the capabilities of the County, additional resources can be requested at the state, regional, and federal levels. The NCAR fire saw the results of robust interagency cooperative relationships that have been a focus for the department for some time. The city’s mutual aid partners were able to support the fire response effort at the NCAR incident successfully due to the many hours of co-training and past response mutual aid. Wildfire Recovery Wildfire recovery is often complex and dictated by land ownership as well as the extent and severity of the fire. In general, primary landowners (e.g., USFS or Boulder County) take the lead on initial recovery response and their actions may be informed by a local recovery group comprised of municipalities, water providers, watershed groups, etc. In general, in the first 30-days after a fire, the focus is on forming local recovery groups, identifying impacted or at-risk critical structures, and conducting burn severity and impact assessments. Emergency landscape stabilization projects and funding procurement may need to be expedited for higher severity wildfires occurring before or during spring runoff season due to the increased potential for erosion, sediment, and debris transport. To facilitate community wildfire recovery, city staff helped lead the effort to develop the Colorado Post Fire Playbook. The Playbook is an 11-step guide for counties, tribes, municipalities, and water providers to understand critical actions before, during, and within 30 days of a wildfire. Page 10 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 14 NEXT STEPS Additional activities tied to the 2022 Climate Tax Fund and Countywide Wildfire Mitigation Sales and Use Tax During the initial evaluation of the 2022 citywide budget priorities, the issue of climate-related resilience, especially in the context of wildfire, became an urgent citywide need and priority. While much of this work is supported by the General Fund, the Open Space Fund or other sources in the 2023 Budget, the new and expanded climate tax affords an appropriate opportunity to enhance city investment in resilience efforts specific to the climate emergency, with a large theme of wildfire resilience. In Boulder, no one city department holds sole responsibility for addressing wildfire. The city is most effective in serving the community when it draws on expertise across the entire organization. City leadership formed a cross-departmental team to identify, prioritize, and implement enhancements to the city’s wildfire resilience efforts, in particular efforts focused on land management actions. This team is also identifying initial areas of focus that could be supported through the $1.5 million incremental increase in the proposed tax amount. The Special ATB Memo summarizes how the $1.5 million dollars in added 2023 revenue will help to enhance current wildfire resilience efforts. As described above, some examples of enchantments include accelerated wildfire risk home assessments, new financing and grant tools to assist homeowners and businesses in risk reduction efforts, updated and widely disseminated wildfire preparedness information, an expanded scope and speed at which fuels management efforts are completed on city lands, and an updated CWPP (see next item). Lastly, as part of the Boulder Fireshed group, city staff are advising on how to appropriate the new revenues generated from the Boulder County Wildfire Mitigation Sales Tax (Ballot Measure 1A) to key organizations and fuel mitigation projects. A likely enhancement coming out of the ballot measure will be expanding the wildfire mitigation program of Wildfire Partners’, allowing them to expand their home assessment work from mountain and foothills homeowners to plains homeowners in Boulder County. Cross-departmental Wildfire and Resilience Planning: the CWPP A CWPP is a plan developed in the collaborative framework established by the Wildland Fire Leadership Council and agreed to by state, tribal, and local government, local fire department, other stakeholders, and federal land management agencies managing land in the vicinity of the planning area. A CWPP identifies and prioritizes areas for hazardous fuel reduction treatments and recommends the types and methods of treatment on Federal and non-Federal land that will protect one or more at-risk communities and essential infrastructure and recommends measures to reduce structural ignitability throughout the at-risk community. A CWPP may address issues such as wildfire response, hazard mitigation, community preparedness, and structure protection. In 2023, city staff will update the City of Boulder CWPP. The last city CWPP was completed in 2007. It is best practice that CWPPs are revisited every 5 years and a current CWPP is needed to ensure eligibility for state and local grants. Moreover, the update will allow staff to revise their understanding of the wildland-urban interface, given the lessons learned during the Marshall Fire, and conduct community engagement to, among other things, understand local perceptions about wildfire risk and mitigation efforts. Page 11 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 15 The Climate Tax Fund will be used to update the CWPP and likely fund implementation projects in out years. For more information, please see the Feb. 16, 2023 Special ATB memo. Page 12 Attachment A Written Information – Item B – Page 16 MEMORANDUM TO: Open Space Board of Trustees FROM: Dan Burke, Director, Open Space and Mountain Parks Phil Yates, Senior Communications Program Manager DATE: May 10, 2023 SUBJECT: Written Information: 2022 Master Plan Annual Report City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) is pleased to share its 2022 annual report (Attachment A), which communicates department highlights in fulfilling the OSMP Master Plan. In 2022, Open Space and Mountain Parks dedicated staff capacity toward over 300 distinct projects and ongoing services to fulfill outcomes and strategies outlined in the Master Plan. Through it all, a generous community continued to provide invaluable support in helping our community to enjoy and protect shared open space. Thank you, Open Space Board of Trustees members, for your service to our community. Attachment: •Attachment A: 2022 Master Plan Annual Report Written Information – Item C – Page 1 1 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) Written Information – Item C – Page 2 2 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Content OSMP Master Plan Context 2022 Master Plan Highlights 07 08 09 12 14 19 23 28 34 38 Focus Areas, Outcomes and Strategies Priority Strategies Master Plan Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 Strategies 2022 Look Back Ecosystem Health and Resilience (EHR) Agriculture Today and Tomorrow (ATT) Responsible Recreation, Stewardship and Enjoyment (RRSE) Community Connection, Education and Inclusion (CCEI) Financial Sustainability (FS) OSMP Budget City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) 03 04 05 Land Acknowledgment Open Space and Mountain Parks Overview Open Space Purposes in the Boulder City Charter Written Information – Item C – Page 3 3 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Land Acknowledgment The City of Boulder acknowledges the city is on the ancestral homelands and unceded territory of Indigenous Peoples who have traversed, lived in and stewarded lands in the Boulder Valley since time immemorial. Those Indigenous Nations include the: Di De’i (Apache), Hinono’eiteen (Arapaho), Tsistsistas (Cheyenne), Nʉmʉnʉʉ (Comanche), Caiugu (Kiowa), Čariks i Čariks (Pawnee), Sosonih (Shoshone), Oc’eti S’akowin (Sioux) and Núuchiu (Ute). We honor and respect the people of these Nations and their ancestors. We also recognize that Indigenous knowledge, oral histories and languages handed down through generations have shaped profound cultural and spiritual connections with Boulder-area lands and ecosystems — connections that are sustained and celebrated to this day. The City of Boulder recognizes that those now living and working on these ancestral lands have a responsibility to acknowledge and address the past. We must not only acknowledge our past but work to build a more just future. We are committed to taking action beyond these words. We pledge to use this land acknowledgment to help inspire education and reflection and initiate meaningful action to help support Indigenous Nations, communities and organizations. Read our full staff land acknowledgment online. The City of Boulder is grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with American Indian Tribal Nation Representatives, to learn more about Indigenous cultures in the past and present and how to help convey their knowledge to open space visitors. As we continue to learn more from Tribal Nations, we encourage community members to take time to learn about and reflect on the Indigenous presence in the Boulder Valley, which has existed since time immemorial. Consider the perspectives emphasized in our shared histories and think about the Indigenous perspectives that have not been included. Learn more about ongoing city consultation and engagement projects with American Indian Tribal Nations, which are helping the city to fulfill the city's: •Indigenous Peoples Day Resolution •Staff land acknowledgment •Open Space and Mountain Parks Master Plan Learn more about ongoing consultation and engagement work with American Indian Tribal Nations online and in the "Community Connection, Education and Inclusion" section of this report. Written Information – Item C – Page 4 4 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Open Space & Mountain Parks Overview Thank you to Boulder community members for their work in building and maintaining the City of Boulder’s Open Space and Mountain Parks system. 46,600 acres ~ 5.5 million The total amount of land the Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) Department preserves and manages. The estimated number of visits OSMP trails receive each year. City-managed lands receive more visits than many National Parks. City-managed open space helps protect 61 species of mammals. OSMP provides habitat for 1,046 plants. OSMP also helps protect 303 native bird species. The Great Plains and Southern Rocky Mountains merge dramatically in Boulder, creating natural areas with high biodiversity and remarkable scenery. OSMP has 129 full-time employees. OSMP manages 16,000 acres of agricultural land. 155 miles The total amount of designated trails that OSMP manages. 1967 The year Boulder residents passed the nation’s first permanent sales tax to preserve and maintain open space. 1974 The year the city developed an important open space plan. Purposes in the plan were included in the city charter in 1986. Written Information – Item C – Page 5 5 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Open Space Purposes Specifically defined open space purposes in Section 176 of the Boulder City Charter set the vision for the work the Open Space and Mountain Parks does every day. Sec. 176 Open Space Purposes-Open Space Land Open space land shall be acquired, maintained, preserved, retained, and used only for the following purposes: •Preservation or restoration of natural areas characterized by or including terrain, geologic formations, flora, or fauna that are unusual, spectacular, historically important, scientifically valuable, or unique, or that represent outstanding or rare examples of native species; •Preservation of water resources in their natural or traditional state, scenic areas or vistas, wildlife habitats, or fragile ecosystems; •Preservation of land for passive recreational use, such as hiking, photography or nature studies, and, if specifically designated, bicycling, horseback riding, or fishing; •Preservation of agricultural uses and land suitable for agricultural production; •Utilization of land for shaping the development of the city, limiting urban sprawl, and disciplining growth; •Utilization of non-urban land for spatial definition of urban areas; •Utilization of land to prevent encroachment on floodplains; and •Preservation of land for its aesthetic or passive recreational value and its contribution to the quality of life of the community. Open space land may not be improved after acquisition unless such improvements are necessary to protect or maintain the land or to provide for passive recreational, open agricultural, or wildlife habitat use of the land. (Added by Ord. No. 4996 (1986), 1, adopted by electorate on Nov. 4, 1986.) Written Information – Item C – Page 6 6 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Master Plan Context Written Information – Item C – Page 7 7 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Focus Areas, Outcomes and Strategies In September 2019, the Boulder City Council unanimously accepted and adopted Open Space and Mountain Parks' first Master Plan. The plan sets the course for achieving a vision for integrated and responsible land management over the next decade and beyond. The Master Plan is based on open space purposes in the city charter, already established community-wide goals and plans, citywide guidance and past OSMP recreation, ecological and agricultural plans. The Master Plan's main framework consists of five focus areas. Under each focus area, there are desired, aspirational outcomes for the future of Boulder’s OSMP system, along with more tactical strategies for how these outcomes can be achieved. The Master Plan's five focus areas are: •Ecosystem Health and Resilience (EHR): Using the best available science, we protect healthy ecosystems and mend those we have impaired. •Responsible Recreation, Stewardship and Enjoyment (RRSE): We are united by our connection to and enjoyment of nature and our obligation to protect it. •Agriculture Today & Tomorrow (AT&T): Our legacy and future are based on working landscapes that are in harmony with nature. •Community Connection, Education & Inclusion (CCEI): Together, we build an inclusive community of stewards and seek to find our place in open space. •Financial Sustainability (FS): We steward public funding to fulfill the City Charter purposes for open space. Master Plan Context Written Information – Item C – Page 8 8 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Priority Strategies There are 46 strategies across the five focus areas in the Master Plan, and they are all designed to guide our work over the next decade. Those strategies are on page 9 and 10 and are also detailed in the focus area sections of this report. The OSMP Master Plan identifies a set of 10 priority Tier 1 strategies that will be accelerated and emphasized with more staff time and funding, especially in the first few years of Master Plan implementation. OSMP prioritized those strategies based on input from the community, the Boulder City Council and the Open Space Board of Trustees. See the following page to read priority Tier 1 Master Plan Strategies, along with Tier 2 and Tier 3 strategies. Community engagement for the Master Plan included seven community events and two drop-in listening sessions, which drew 900 attendees. Members of the public submitted more than 10,000 comments to help shape the plan. OSMP staff also engaged over 1,400 people who are not typically heard from during engagement processes, including members of the Spanish-speaking community, people experiencing disabilities and Boulder-area youth. Written Information – Item C – Page 9 9 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Master Plan Strategies Tier 1 EHR. 1 Preserve and restore important habitat blocks and corridors Tier 1 EHR. 2 Update and continue implementing system plans guiding ecosystem management Tier 1 EHR. 3 Address the global climate crisis here and now Tier 1 ATT. 1 Reduce maintenance backlog for agriculture and water infrastructure Tier 1 ATT. 2 Increase soil health and resilience Tier 1 ATT. 3 Address conflicts between agriculture and prairie dogs Tier 1 RRSE. 1 Assess and manage increasing visitation Tier 1 RRSE. 2 Reduce trail maintenance backlog Tier 1 CCEI. 1 Welcome diverse backgrounds and abilities Tier 1 CCEI. 2 Enhance communication with visitors Tier 2 EHR. 4 Reduce undesignated trails Tier 2 EHR. 5 Extend on-trail requirements Tier 2 EHR. 6 Control invasive species Tier 2 EHR. 7 Develop a learning laboratory approach to conservation Tier 2 ATT. 4 Protect water resources in a warmer future Tier 2 ATT. 5 Encourage diverse and innovative agricultural operations Tier 2 RRSE. 3 Update guidelines and standards for quality trail design and construction Tier 2 RRSE. 4 Encourage multimodal access to trailheads Tier 2 RRSE. 5 Manage passive recreation activities requiring an OSMP permit Tier 2 CCEI. 3 Connect youth to the outdoors Tier 2 CCEI. 4 Support citywide engagement with federally recognized American Indian Tribes and Indigenous Peoples Written Information – Item C – Page 10 10 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Master Plan Strategies Tier 3 EHR. 8 Reduce impacts from noise, light and nearby land uses Tier 3 EHR. 9 Reduce and offset OSMP greenhouse gas emissions Tier 3 ATT. 6 Support the success of ranchers and farmers Tier 3 ATT. 7 Integrate native ecosystems and agriculture Tier 3 ATT. 8 Further reduce or eliminate pesticide use Tier 3 ATT. 9 Enhance enjoyment and protection of working landscapes Tier 3 RRSE. 6 Support a range of passive recreation experiences Tier 3 RRSE. 7 Build new trails as guided by past and future plans Tier 3 RRSE. 8 Provide welcoming and inspiring visitor facilities and services Tier 3 RRSE. 9 Develop a learning laboratory approach to recreation Tier 3 CCEI. 5 Foster wellness through immersion in the outdoors Tier 3 CCEI. 6 Inspire environmental literacy and new involvement in OSMP Tier 3 CCEI. 7 Cultivate leaders in stewardship Tier 3 CCEI. 8 Heighten community understanding of land management efforts Tier 3 CCEI. 9 Preserve and protect Boulder’s cultural heritage Tier 3 FS.5, FS.6, FS.7 Acquisitions 10 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Written Information – Item C – Page 11 11 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report112022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report 2022 Master Plan Highlights Written Information – Item C – Page 12 12 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report In 2022, Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) dedicated staff capacity toward over 300 distinct projects and ongoing services to fulfill outcomes and strategies outlined in the Master Plan. Through it all, a generous community continued to provide invaluable support in helping our community to enjoy and protect shared open space. The intent of this section of the annual report is not to list everything that was accomplished but rather highlight a few projects and initiatives of note. 2022: Look Back January 1 OSMP continued closures as part of the Marshall Fire. Learn more about OSMP efforts to address damage and impacts from the fire throughout this report. February 18 OSMP completed construction of the new 2.2-mile Anemone Loop Trail west of downtown Boulder. March 15 City of Boulder and OSMP staff held a Tribal Consultation with federally recognized Tribal Nations to discuss a proposed Memorandum of Understanding. March 26 OSMP Rangers evacuated visitors from trails during the NCAR Fire south of Boulder. Other OSMP "red carded" staff also helped battle the fire. Learn more. April 26 OSMP worked with local ranchers to return cattle to open space south of Boulder as part of ongoing wildfire mitigation and natural ecosystem resiliency work. May 28 The Eldo Shuttle began providing access to OSMP’s Marshall Mesa, Doudy Draw and South Mesa trailheads. July 11 OSMP invited public input on a staff evaluation of e-bikes on city open space and a preliminary staff proposal to allow them on 34 miles of trails. Learn more. July 27 Tribal Representatives from Arapaho and Cheyenne Nations visited Boulder to help OSMP begin planning the future of the Fort Chambers-Poor Farm property. August 18 OSMP's "Art Inspired by the Land" exhibit began with performances by musicians, songwriters, poets and filmmakers. October 18 OSMP used a helicopter to move materials for repairs on the Mount Sanitas Trail. Funding for the work was supported by the Boulder Open Space Conservancy. December 15 OSMP instituted extended wildlife closures to help protect nesting golden eagles on cliff formations along the Boulder Flatirons. Select 2022 Milestones and Events Written Information – Item C – Page 13 13 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report In March 2022, OSMP staff helped firefighters battle the NCAR Fire south of Boulder. In all, 40 OSMP staff members helped firefighters battle wildfires in 2022. OSMP Rangers also have played a critical role in helping visitors evacuate OSMP trails during fires. Learn more about how OSMP addresses wildfire risks on open space. In August 2022, Open Space and Mountain Parks invited community members to its "Art Inspired by the Land" community exhibition. In February 2022, Open Space and Mountain Parks completed the new 2.2-mile Anemone Loop Trail west of downtown Boulder. 2022: A Look Back Written Information – Item C – Page 14 14 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report What this Looks Like (Outcomes): EHR.A) HIGH DIVERSITY OF NATIVE PLANTS AND ANIMALS: OSMP lands support a high diversity of native plants and animals, expansive natural areas and some of the most critical wildlife habitat along the Front Range. EHR.B) RESTORED, RESILIENT HABITAT: Degraded habitat with high potential to support native or extirpated (i.e., locally extinct) native species is restored and made more resilient to stressors like invasive species or direct and indirect human impacts. EHR.C) CLIMATE ACTION: OSMP is a leader in helping native ecosystems withstand and adapt to the effects of the climate crisis. EHR.D) INFORMED, SHARED STEWARDSHIP: OSMP and the community work side by side to develop a greater understanding of the land and to safeguard our natural heritage. How this is Achieved (Strategies): EHR.1) PRESERVE AND RESTORE IMPORTANT HABITAT BLOCKS AND CORRIDORS: Sustain, enhance, connect and restore habitat blocks with high ecological value and potential through conservation practices. EHR.2) UPDATE AND CONTINUE IMPLEMENTING SYSTEM PLANS GUIDING ECOSYSTEM MANAGEMENT: Update the Grassland and Forest Ecosystem Management Plans and continue managing entire ecosystems by considering all elements and processes of natural systems rather than focusing on one species or attribute at a time. EHR.3) ADDRESS THE GLOBAL CLIMATE CRISIS HERE AND NOW: For the benefit of natural ecosystems and future generations, exhibit environmental leadership by taking immediate, targeted and unified action in response to ecosystem changes that the global climate crisis will bring about. Ecosystem Health and Resilience Using the best available science, we protect healthy ecosystems and mend those we have impaired. Two of the major ecosystems OSMP preserves are grasslands and forests. Both provide habitats for a wide diversity of wildlife and plant species. Written Information – Item C – Page 15 15 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report EHR.4) REDUCE UNDESIGNATED TRAILS: Guided by best practices or area-specific plans, mitigate resource impacts by restoring, designating, re-routing or recategorizing undesignated trails, especially in sensitive habitat areas, while considering appropriate routes to serve desired destinations for visitors. EHR.5) EXTEND ON-TRAIL REQUIREMENTS: Through future area planning, reduce off-trail travel in targeted locations, especially in sensitive habitat areas. EHR.6) CONTROL INVASIVE SPECIES: Prioritize management and control of species that have severe and/or widespread impacts, particularly those that are non-native and most likely to be controlled. EHR.7) DEVELOP A LEARNING LABORATORY APPROACH TO CONSERVATION: Conduct, support, apply and widely distribute the findings of long-term scientific research to inspire and engage community stewardship. EHR.8) REDUCE IMPACTS FROM NOISE, LIGHT AND NEARBY LAND USES: Mitigate impacts to wildlife, sensitive habitat areas, scenic character or natural soundscapes from noise pollution, light pollution and adjacent land uses. EHR.9) REDUCE AND OFFSET OSMP GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS: Support the citywide climate commitment by reducing and offsetting greenhouse gas emissions related to departmental operations. OSMP helps preserve important wildlife and plant habitats for many species, including 61 mammals, 1,046 native plants, 303 birds, 131 butterflies and skipper, and 21 reptiles and amphibians. Written Information – Item C – Page 16 16 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Ecosystem Health and Resilience Notable 2022 Highlights •Forest Thinning. OSMP staff spent more than 12,000 hours of staff time on forest health and fire mitigation on city open space. A total of 145 acres were thinned in a variety of priority project areas around the system. The work was partially funded by over $90,000 in state and federal grant funds, and supported by 1,500 hours of time from Junior Rangers, volunteers and Ready to Work crews. Master Plan Strategy EHR.1 •Tall Oatgrass. Grazing as a management tool for tall oatgrass in the Shanahan area continued in 2022. About 500 acres were grazed by 65 head of cattle between April and June. The grazed areas also played an important role in the NCAR fire (March 26), where the reduced fuel loads helped firefighters hold the fire. Master Plan Strategy EHR.1 •Funded Research Program. OSMP lands are a magnet for scientific inquiry. In fact, researchers have written more than 400 reports based on their work on city-managed open space. In the last four years alone, city open space has helped researchers to develop 47 journal publications. In addition, more than $1 million has been invested in small research grants since 1995. In 2022, OSMP funded nine research projects to investigate a diverse set of topics, such as wildfire risk reduction, invasive species management, drought impacts on grasslands and Marshall fire vegetation recovery. Visit our "Journey into our Outdoor Learning Lab" storymap and read our research program webpage to learn more. Master Plan Strategies EHR.7 and RRSE.9 •Non-Native Vegetation Management. OSMP dedicated a crew of 10 temporary staff to non-native species management. Over 50,000 individual List A plants were pulled and over 5,000 acres of treatments were completed across the system. OSMP staff also worked on various collaborative projects across area public lands with staff from the Colorado Department of Agriculture, Boulder County, Jefferson County and the Longmont Conservation District, with support from generous volunteers. OSMP received $80,000 in state funding to support efforts on city lands. In 2023, the state provided an additional $55,000 to help expand non-native species mapping and management across the system. Master Plan Strategy EHR.6 •Raptors. OSMP raptor monitoring and seasonal wildlife closures supported successful raptor breeding, with one successful Bald Eagle nest, three successful Golden Eagle nests and five successful Osprey nests. Unfortunately, a single Prairie Falcon and five Peregrine Falcon nesting attempts failed for unknown reasons. Master Plan Strategy EHR.1 Written Information – Item C – Page 17 17 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report •Northern Leopard Frog. OSMP staff conducted 350 visits to 133 wetlands to monitor amphibians. Staff detected the Northern Leopard Frog – a state Tier 1 species of greatest conservation need – at 39 wetlands, the most since monitoring began in 2006. Northern Leopard Frog breeding was confirmed at 14 sites, comprising 10 “territories." OSMP supports all of the breeding sites for the animal in Boulder County. In 2022, OSMP staff – with help from the Ready to Work crew – removed 8 tons of cattails to help improve Northern Leopard Frog habitat. Master Plan Strategy EHR.1 •Native Plant Material. Locally collected seed and plant materials are an essential part of OSMP ecological restoration efforts. This material can be used in various projects and is essential in maintaining local native plant diversity. During the 2022 season, OSMP staff and volunteers collected 15 different seed species during 10 volunteer projects. Volunteers provided 650 hours of their time, with OSMP staff contributing an additional 100 hours. Master Plan Strategy EHR.1 •Bear Canyon Trail Reroute. Trail crews rerouted the Bear Canyon Trail to help protect sensitive wildlife habitat for the Preble's meadow jumping mouse and other important wildlife species. Master Plan Strategy EHR.1 •Threatened and Endangered Species. OSMP staff completed four weeks of small mammal monitoring to determine where Preble’s meadow jumping mouse occurs. Preble’s were captured along South Boulder Creek in federally designated critical habitat as well as an area known to historically support Preble's. Master Plan Strategy EHR.1 •Restoring Undesignated Trails. OSMP closed and restored undesignated, unmaintained trails in the Anemone Loop Trail area west of downtown Boulder. OSMP also conducted restoration efforts along miles of trails with the help of Boulder County Youth Corps and volunteers. Master Plan Strategy EHR.4 •Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure. The department installed infrastructure at the OSMP Hub, where most department employees work. OSMP ordered 10 electric trucks and took delivery of one truck. Master Plan Strategy EHR.9 Written Information – Item C – Page 18 18 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report In November 2022, a black bear took an interest in an OSMP wildlife camera and captured around 400 "bear selfies.” The bear pictures later went viral on social media, with news outlets around the world clamoring to cover them. More importantly, OSMP used the viral images to show how we use wildlife cameras to monitor and protect habitats. OSMP forests support a wide diversity of wildlife and plant species OSMP grasslands support wildlife and rare plant communities OSMP supports more than 60% of native flora found in Boulder County Livestock grazing south of Boulder helps to remove invasive weeds and vegetation that can fuel fires. Grazing and forest thinning in the area, combined with fast actions from firefighters, helped slow the March 2022 NCAR Fire and kept it from becoming a more intense fire. Written Information – Item C – Page 19 19 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report What this Looks Like (Outcomes): ATT.A) VIABLE AGRICULTURAL LIVELIHOODS: The city’s ranchers and farmers are valued and supported in their contributions to the stewardship of Boulder’s agricultural heritage. ATT.B) SUSTAINABLE, PRODUCTIVE AGRICULTURE: OSMP’s agricultural lands and infrastructure remain productive and sustainable long into the future. ATT.C) DIVERSE AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS FOR LOCAL MARKETS: A diversity of food and agricultural products is grown on suitable open space properties to better meet the changing demands of the local agricultural economy and the needs of ranchers, farmers and city residents. ATT.D) HIGH-VALUE HABITAT ON RANCHES AND FARMS: City agricultural lands provide high-value habitat for rare and native species, integrating both agricultural and ecosystem objectives. ATT.E) SOIL HEALTH AND RESILIENCE: Appropriate agricultural practices protect high-quality soils from erosion, improve productivity, maintain soil health and increase resilience in a changing climate. ATT.F) RESILIENT AND EFFICIENT WATER SUPPLY: OSMP emerges as a leader in the acquisition and preservation of water assets and the application of innovative irrigation practices that anticipate environmental change. ATT.G) APPRECIATION FOR WORKING LANDSCAPES: Community members experience and better understand working landscapes, contributing to the preservation of Boulder’s agricultural lands and heritage. Agriculture Today and Tomorrow Our legacy and future are based on working landscapes that are in harmony with nature. The Boulder City Charter supports the acquisition of land suitable for agricultural production and the preservation of agricultural uses on open space. Written Information – Item C – Page 20 20 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report How this is Achieved (Strategies): ATT.1) REDUCE MAINTENANCE BACKLOG FOR AGRICULTURE AND WATER INFRASTRUC- TURE: Focus investments on maintaining and improving existing agricultural infrastructure to standards – both water-related and structural. ATT.2) INCREASE SOIL HEALTH AND RESILIENCE: Manage agricultural activities in tilled lands and native grasslands to prevent soil erosion, maintain and/or improve soil health, se- quester carbon and protect ecosystem function. ATT.3) ADDRESS CONFLICTS BETWEEN AGRICULTURE AND PRAIRIE DOGS: Maintain the viability of agricultural operations by reduc- ing impacts from prairie dogs on irrigated lands while supporting ecologically sustainable prairie dog populations across the larger landscape. ATT.4) PROTECT WATER RESOURCES IN A WARMER FUTURE: Develop and implement a water resources management plan that bal- ances sustainable agriculture, ecosystem stew- ardship, protection of water rights, efficiency of water use and resilience in a more variable climate. ATT.5) ENCOURAGE DIVERSE AND INNOVATIVE AGRICULTURAL OPERATIONS: Partner with open space ranchers and farm- ers to analyze and, where appropriate, expand the variety of agricultural operations on OSMP lands, focusing on the infrastructure and tech- nical assistance needed to support local food systems, including diversified vegetable farm- ing, pastured livestock, micro dairies and taking products to market. ATT.6) SUPPORT THE SUCCESS OF RANCHERS AND FARMERS: Where appropriate, evaluate and pilot cost-sharing, partnerships and other mechanisms to encourage both responsible land stewardship and economic viability for a diverse range of current and future farmers and ranchers on OSMP lands. ATT.7) INTEGRATE NATIVE ECOSYSTEMS AND AGRICULTURE: While maintaining the viability of agricultural operations, evaluate and increase the potential for improving the quality of habitat on agricultural lands through staff-led programs and partnerships with ranchers and farmers. ATT.8) FURTHER REDUCE OR ELIMINATE PESTICIDE USE: Reduce or eliminate the use of pesticides wherever possible. When reduction or elimination of pesticides is not possible, use the least toxic and least persistent pesticide that is effective. ATT.9) ENHANCE ENJOYMENT AND PROTECTION OF WORKING LANDSCAPES: Partner with community members, farmers and ranchers to maintain and enhance the condition of working landscapes, viewsheds and historic structures. Written Information – Item C – Page 21 21 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Agriculture Today and Tomorrow Notable 2022 Highlights •Support Local Farmers and Ranchers. OSMP administered leases on about 16,000 acres of land with 27 local farmers and ranchers. OSMP staff partnered with seven livestock producers to implement prescriptive grazing projects to enhance resource conditions on more than 600 acres of OSMP land. Master Plan Strategies ATT.5, ATT.6 and ATT.7 •Marshall Fire Recovery. The city awarded two contracts to replace and repair fencing damaged by the Marshall Fire. Approximately 23,500 feet of fencing was replaced and over 14,600 feet of fencing was repaired. OSMP staff also worked with FEMA to replace structures destroyed in the Marshall Fire. Master Plan Strategies TT.1, ATT.6 and FS.4. •Agricultural Land Restoration. OSMP installed over 24,600 feet of barrier fencing and removed prairie dogs from 160 acres of irrigated land. OSMP completed restoration activities on over 70 acres and are in progress on about 90 acres to enhance agricultural production and improve soil health. Master Plan Strategies ATT.2 and ATT.3 •Soil Health Treatments and Monitoring. OSMP implemented soil health treatments on 300 acres of leased land and on 100 acres of unleased agricultural land. Treatments included compost applications, cover crop seeding, inter-seeding to increase diversity, key line plowing and targeted grazing management. Master Plan Strategy ATT.2 •Water Resources Maintenance and Operations. OSMP conducted an agricultural tenant survey to identify and prioritize irrigation infrastructure maintenance and improvement needs. OSMP staff completed 26 different maintenance projects to enhance water delivery through 18 miles of irrigation ditches. Master Plan Strategies ATT.1 and ATT.4 •Agriculture and Water Infrastructure Improvements. The department allocated over $188,000 to 10 capital projects to design and improve irrigation diversion structures, install measurement devices, repair pipelines and replace culverts. Staff replaced or refurbished over 16,500 feet and conducted routine maintenance on nearly 36,000 feet of agricultural fencing. Master Plan Strategy ATT.1 Written Information – Item C – Page 22 22 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report OSMP leases about 16,000 acres of agricultural land 30 OSMP-managed ditches help provide water to ag operations 27 farmers and ranchers conduct operations on OSMP-managed land OSMP agricultural staff collaborates with lessees to use cattle to remove invasive vegetation that can fuel wildfires. Cattle also help to remove invasive tall oatgrass weeds, which can harm resilient native grass species. Written Information – Item C – Page 23 23 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Responsible Recreation, Stewardship & Enjoyment What this Looks Like (Outcomes): RRSE.A) DIVERSE RANGE OF RECREATIONAL EXPERIENCES: A fun and diverse range of passive recreational experiences inspire stewardship and contribute to our physical and mental well-being. RRSE.B) ENJOYABLE, RESPONSIBLE RECREATION: Amid changing visitor use levels and patterns, ecosystem health is sustained, and visitor experiences remain positive. RRSE.C) WELCOMING, ACCESSIBLE TRAILHEADS: Welcoming trailheads and supporting recreational facilities provide access to and highlight Boulder’s scenic, natural and cultural landscape. RRSE.D) GREAT EXPERIENCES FOR ALL: Visitors respect and care for each other and for the land, so all can enjoy themselves for generations to come. RRSE.E) HIGH-QUALITY TRAIL NETWORK: Visitors can enjoy OSMP lands and reach a range of recreational destinations through a well- maintained, connected network of local and regional trails that is welcoming and accessible to all. How this is Achieved (Strategies): RRSE.1) ASSESS AND MANAGE INCREASING VISITATION: Continue implementing measures from approved plans to mitigate impacts of increasing visitation in specific locations, while also updating the systemwide visitor use management plan to generate and implement ideas for understanding and addressing visitation growth throughout the system and to nurture stewardship and enjoyable visitor experiences. We are united by our connection to and enjoyment of nature and our obligation to protect it. Open Space and Mountain Parks provides access to a diverse range of visitor experiences and access to some of the most diverse natural areas in the western U.S. Written Information – Item C – Page 24 24 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report RRSE.2) REDUCE TRAIL MAINTENANCE BACKLOG: Using a prioritized, life-cycle approach to improving the condition of OSMP’s diverse portfolio of historic and modern trails, develop and implement a maintenance approach to fix immediate needs and identify what is needed to manage the trail network long-term. RRSE.3) UPDATE GUIDELINES AND STANDARDS FOR QUALITY TRAIL DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION: Design and construct quality trails that facilitate a range of experiences through a variety of landscape types, using design guidelines and construction standards that elevate the quality, sustainability and accessibility of trails and encourage the use of native materials that blend with natural surroundings. RRSE.4) ENCOURAGE MULTIMODAL ACCESS TO TRAILHEADS: Explore and partner on a range of coordinated transportation and design solutions to reduce parking congestion, reduce greenhouse gas emissions from visitor travel and promote active living, ecosystem health and public transportation. RRSE.5) MANAGE PASSIVE RECREATION ACTIVITIES REQUIRING AN OSMP PERMIT: Support enjoyable and compatible recreation experiences by periodically evaluating and refining management practices for use permits, off-leash dog visits and other related regulations to minimize resource impacts and ensure programs are easy-to-understand for visitors, manageable for staff and responsive to changing conditions. RRSE.6) SUPPORT A RANGE OF PASSIVE RECREATION EXPERIENCES: Continue to honor a diverse range of passive recreation opportunities that respect the unique character and history of the Boulder community and its surrounding open space lands, providing fun and memorable experiences. RRSE.7) BUILD NEW TRAILS AS GUIDED BY PAST AND FUTURE PLANS: Implement past and future plans by constructing new local and regional trail segments where lands offer high recreation potential, especially when opportunities for citywide and regional partnerships leverage OSMP funding. RRSE.8) PROVIDE WELCOMING AND INSPIRING VISITOR FACILITIES AND SERVICES: For a range of visitor demographics, continue to provide and improve welcoming, sustainable and accessible trailheads and facilities that lay lightly on the land and inspire understanding of the surrounding landscape, such as the Ranger Cottage, Flagstaff Nature Center, Panorama Point, and other gathering areas or viewpoints. RRSE.9) DEVELOP A LEARNING LABORATORY APPROACH TO RECREATION: Combine community engagement results with scientific research and comprehensive data analysis to understand trends, develop and assess practical initiatives, and design management approaches that seek to improve community well-being, enjoyment, understanding and stewardship. Written Information – Item C – Page 25 25 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Responsible Recreation, Stewardship & Enjoyment Notable 2022 Highlights •Trail Maintenance and Improvements. OSMP staff, Junior Rangers, youth corps and volunteers conducted extensive trail maintenance efforts. Learn more about 2022 trail maintenance projects on page 27. At the height of the 2022 work season, the OSMP trails group had more than 100 people working on trail maintenance backlog projects during a single day. Master Plan Strategies RRSE.2 and FS.4 •New Trail Construction and Design. OSMP completed construction of the new Anemone Loop Trail. OSMP staff also conducted extensive trail design and permitting work for the North Sky Trail north of Boulder and a new loop trail on Gunbarrel Hill northeast of Boulder. Master Plan Strategies RRSE.7 and EHR.4 •OSMP Evaluation of E-bikes on Trails. OSMP conducted an evaluation of e-biking on OSMP lands, including analyzing three alternatives on which trails to consider if the current condition/status quo of no-bikes on open space were to be changed. OSMP gathered community input, which indicated there is majority support of the community for allowing e-biking on open space. OSMP staff developed a recommendation to allow e-biking as a passive recreational activity on open space and a preferred alternative to manage e-biking on Plains trails east of Broadway that allow biking and the Boulder Canyon Trail. The Boulder City Council will consider e-bikes on open space in 2023. Master Plan Strategy RRSE.6 •Trailhead Maintenance and Improvements. OSMP conducted major maintenance at the Four Mile Creek Trailhead to repair and resurface the asphalt parking lot. Staff continued trailhead closures to address and improve trailhead infrastructure. Master Plan Strategy RRSE. 8 •New Trails Specifications and Standards. OSMP staff developed guidance that provide standardized construction specifications and details to guide trail projects implemented by OSMP trail crews and contractors. Master Plan Strategy RRSE. 3 •Updated Sign Infrastructure. OSMP improved signs in the Mesa, Sanitas and Flagstaff areas to increase symbols and text size to accommodate various visitor types and backgrounds. Staff updated 12 deteriorating regulation boards to contemporary kiosks to allow for larger text, universal symbols and content on signs. Master Plan Strategy RRSE.8 Written Information – Item C – Page 26 26 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report •New Education Signs. OSMP signs staff developed and installed interpretive signs in key areas along South Boulder Creek to provide information about New Zealand mudsnails, a highly invasive aquatic species. Master Plan Strategy RRSE.9 •Public Opinion Visitor Experience Survey (POVES). OSMP collected over 2,300 questionnaires from 192 active survey sites to understand and update trend information about OSMP visitors. That information included: Visitor attributes and demographics, trip characteristics and ratings of OSMP services and facilities. It also will include information on perceptions of interactions with other visitors, policy development, information preferences and potential management strategies. Information on visitation experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic are captured in both the recreation and land management-focused questionnaires. Master Plan Strategy RRSE.1 •Trail Condition Monitoring. OSMP completed field surveys and analysis for 31 miles of designated trails and another 6 miles of as-built surveys on Royal Arch, Bear Canyon and Anemone trails. Staff also mapped 26 miles of undesignated trails. Master Plan Strategies RRSE.1, RRSE.2, EHR.4, EHR.1 and FS.3 •Visitation Statistics. OSMP collected visitation data from 18 permanent trail counter locations and deployed 80 short-term counters to collect visitation counts across the system. Master Plan Strategy RRSE.1 •Parking Studies. OSMP staff completed two parking study reports to better understand trailhead parking lot utilization. OSMP also expanded the vehicle counter fleet, analyzed vehicle counter trend data, and conducted a study to assess nighttime parking on Flagstaff. Master Plan Strategy RRSE.1 OSMP manages 37 trailheads and 76 designated access points Learn about OSMP trails and closures at OSMPTrails.org Text “OSMP” to 888-777 to receive texts on muddy trail closures Written Information – Item C – Page 27 27 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Ski Jump Trail Reroute Doudy Draw Trail Repairs Bluebell Mesa Trail Reroute Marshall Mesa and Valley Trail Repairs Flatirons Loop Trail Repairs Crown Rock Picnic Loop Trail Repairs Red Rocks Trail Repairs Sawhill/Walden Bridge Replacement Ranger Trail Repairs Coal Seam Trail Repairs 1st/2nd Flatiron Trail Repairs Bear Peak West Ridge Trail Repairs Sage Trail Repairs Mt. Sanitas Trail Repairs Mallory Cave Trail Repairs Mayhoffer-Singletree Trail Repairs Skunk Canyon (Rock Climbing Access) Darkside Bouldering Area 2022 Trail Projects $136,631 The total monetary value that volunteers contributed to help maintain and repair trails across OSMP's 155-mile trail system 3,000 Hours Were spent on routine trail maintenance during spring and fall. 350 7.5 miles New timber steps and stone stairs were installed on OSMP trails Of trail tread was constructed, maintained or repaired 300 52 tons Tons of material was used to resurface city open space trails Of stone was helicoptered to Sanitas for trail repairs Written Information – Item C – Page 28 28 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report What this Looks Like (Outcomes): CCEI.A) INSPIRING ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION: Visitors participate in education programs and other forums that deepen their sense of place and appreciation for Boulder’s natural, cultural and scenic heritage and broaden their understanding of OSMP land and its management. CCEI.B) FULFILLING COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Community volunteerism, partnerships and neighborhood involvement serve an increasingly vital role in OSMP’s fulfillment of the City Charter purposes for open space. CCEI.C) LIFETIME CONNECTIONS WITH NATURE: Long-term connections with OSMP lands are strengthened and deepened over the course of our lives and across generations, in part to inspire response to the climate crisis. CCEI.D) PHYSICAL AND MENTAL WELL-BEING: Increase awareness of the benefits of nature and the ways visiting OSMP lands can reduce stress and increase physical and mental well-being. CCEI.E) ENGAGED YOUTH INSPIRED BY NATURE: OSMP is an emerging leader in promoting an increase in the time that youth spend outdoors and caring for their open space system. CCEI.F) PROMOTING EQUITY AND INCLUSION: We are all part of an inclusive community where all people feel welcome, safe and able to enjoy the benefits of open space. CCEI.G) CONNECTIONS TO BOULDER’S PAST: Cultural landscapes and historic resources on OSMP lands are preserved so that people can enjoy and understand the places and stories of Boulder’s past. OSMP staff and volunteers lead many nature and educa- tion programs to help youth create lifetime connections with nature. Our legacy and future are based on working landscapes that are in harmony with nature. Community Connection, Education & Inclusion Written Information – Item C – Page 29 29 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report How this is Achieved (Strategies): CCEI.1) WELCOME DIVERSE BACKGROUNDS AND ABILITIES: Improve understanding, services and facilities for underserved communities through outreach, collaborative partnerships, listening sessions, culturally- relevant programming, language translations, visual signs and materials, staffing and other creative means of empowering and engaging underserved members of our community. CCEI.2) ENHANCE COMMUNICATION WITH VISITORS: Foster discovery, enjoyment and stewardship through a coordinated effort to enhance signs, communications and media that incorporate effective design, messaging and languages for a range of audiences as well as increasing ranger and volunteer presence on the system to welcome and inform visitors. CCEI.3) CONNECT YOUTH TO THE OUTDOORS: Ensure youth get outside more by offering a continuum of educational and service-learning opportunities that fosters youth interest, competence and confidence in enjoying and conserving nature. CCEI.4) SUPPORT CITYWIDE ENGAGEMENT WITH FEDERALLY RECOGNIZED AMERICAN INDIAN TRIBES AND INDIGENOUS PEOPLES: Support citywide efforts to work in partnership with federally recognized American Indian Tribes and other city departments through formal government-to-government consultations to support American Indian Tribes and Indigenous Peoples’ connections to their ancestral homelands. CCEI.5) FOSTER WELLNESS THROUGH IMMERSION IN THE OUTDOORS: Working with schools and organizations, raise awareness of how open space improves physical and mental well-being. CCEI.6) INSPIRE ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY AND NEW INVOLVEMENT IN OSMP: Build the capacity of environmental education to inspire collective stewardship and climate action through comprehensive, collaborative programming across the system. CCEI.7) CULTIVATE LEADERS IN STEWARDSHIP: Advance skill-building and training for volunteers and stewards through expanded mentorship and leadership opportunities that increase OSMP’s capacity to address needs and support career development in open space management. CCEI.8) HEIGHTEN COMMUNITY UNDERSTANDING OF LAND MANAGEMENT EFFORTS: Heighten community and neighborhood understanding and involvement in OSMP management and planning efforts through targeted education, outreach and in-person engagements in support of on-the- ground action. CCEI.9) PRESERVE AND PROTECT BOULDER’S CULTURAL HERITAGE: Complete and maintain a cultural resource inventory and management plan to improve the protection of cultural resources and landscapes and to connect all people with Boulder’s past. Written Information – Item C – Page 30 30 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Community Connection, Education & Inclusion Notable 2022 Highlights •OSMP Rangers and Protection of Land and People. OSMP Rangers patrol open space in various ways, including by foot and on bike. Rangers patrolled 7,550 miles on foot in 2022 – that’s more than walking across the entire country twice! In 2022, they responded to over 300 incidents, including: 161 law enforcement calls, 27 fire calls and 147 search-and-rescue calls. In addition, Rangers made over 25,000 contacts with open space visitors. Most contacts provided open space information to visitors. Rangers also evacuated hikers, secured perimeters and joined wildland fire crews to fight the 2022 NCAR fire and the Sunshine Wildland Fire. Thank you, OSMP Rangers, for your hard work in helping protect visitors and our shared public lands! Master Plan Strategies CCEI.1, CCEI.2, EHR.3 and FS.9 •Fort Chambers / Poor Farm Site Management Plan. The City of Boulder purchased the Fort Chambers / Poor Farm property northeast of Boulder in 2018 to help preserve open space around Boulder and fulfill open space purposes in the city charter. OSMP staff extend their gratitude to the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes, the Northern Arapaho Tribe and the Northern Cheyenne Tribe for providing guidance on a planned site management plan for the Fort Chambers / Poor Farm property, which has a direct, local connection to the Sand Creek Massacre. Staff look forward to ongoing collaboration with Tribal Nations for this effort. Learn more about this ongoing project. Master Plan Strategy CCEI.4 •Planned Ethnographic Report with Tribal Nations. City of Boulder staff recognize the interpretation and educational information describing city history is dominated by American-European perspectives and fails to include Indigenous perspectives adequately. The report will be informed by in-person interviews with Tribal Representatives and is intended to help the Boulder community learn about Tribal Nations' enduring traditional, cultural, historical and spiritual connections to the Boulder Valley. The planned ethnographic-education report also will help city and Tribal Nations to develop education and interpretation materials that provide accurate, truthful Indigenous Peoples’ stories – both past and present. City staff extend their appreciation to Tribal Representatives for their guidance in helping the city to develop the planned report. Master Plan Strategy CCEI.4 Written Information – Item C – Page 31 31 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report •Proposed Memorandum of Understanding with Tribal Nations. City staff and Tribal Representatives discussed a proposed MOU that consolidates past City-Tribal Nation MOUs, and seeks to set a foundation for future City-Tribal Nation collaboration and ongoing consultation. Master Plan Strategy CCEI.4 •Cultural Stewardship and Tribal Consultation. OSMP staff consulted with Tribal Nations on cultural resource management topics and associated archaeological documentation. Master Plan Strategy CCEI. 4 •Thank You, Generous Volunteers! Volunteer Visitor Ambassadors made 22,000 visitor contacts, Volunteer Trail Guides made 21,000 contacts and Flagstaff Nature Center volunteers made 3,800 contacts. Bike Patrol volunteers made 575 contacts. In 2022, 54 raptor and bat volunteers dedicated 3,355 hours to help OSMP observe and collect data to support OSMP resource management decisions. Master Plan Strategies CCEI.2, CCEI.8 and EHR.7 •Bridgehouse Ready to Work Crews. Crews supported Marshall Fire recovery efforts in addition to their traditional workplan. Master Plan Strategies CCEI.8 and EHR.7 •Junior Rangers. Junior Rangers supported Ski Jump and Bluebell Mesa trail reroutes at Chautauqua. Junior Rangers also worked on a Bear Peak West Ridge project, placing 75 timber steps and 42 rocks in eight weeks. They continued to implement more inclusive hiring practice, including a partnership with the Youth Services Initiative (YSI) program. Master Plan Strategies CCEI.1 and CCEI.3 •"Art Inspired by the Land." This community art exhibit had a theme of healing. Over 175 artists shared their creative work. Master Plan Strategy CCEI 2 •Historic Facilities Rehabilitation. OSMP staff started rehabilitation work on the Lewis farmhouse, which included planning for construction (architectural and engineering work and permitting), demolition and structural repair, and reinforcement of the foundation. The Lewis house will be leased to support local agriculture when completed. Other work included assessments of historic structures in the Marshall Fire area and applying for grants. Master Plan Strategy CCEI.9 •Repository for Cultural Resources. OSMP established a repository approved by the Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation for the department's cultural resources collection. Master Plan Strategy CCEI.9 Written Information – Item C – Page 32 32 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Recreation/Environmental/History Hikes OSMP hosts programs to inspire visitors, increase environmental literacy and help our community to enjoy and protect shared open space. Spanish and Bilingual Hikes Bilingual activities and hikes connect Spanish-speaking community members to shared public lands. Accessible Opportunities OSMP offers wheelchair experiential trainings, accessibility presentations, all-terrain handcycle experiences, guided hikes and accessibility events. LGBTQA+ Programs OSMP’s Out in Nature series provides programs to help connect this historically under-represented population to the land and its healing qualities. Youth Leadership and Building Stewards OSMP staff and volunteers provide activities to reach chil- dren and parents through school and family programs. Voice and Sight Program Dog guardians who want to participate in a program that provides their dogs off-leash access on designated trails must take an online class. Climate Change Activities enable visitors to address global climate change and are focused on education at climate action volunteer projects and through out Junior Ranger Program. Recreation and Wellness Fun and memorable programs include Trails Challenge hikes, Full Moon hikes, Flatirons - Icons of Boulder hikes and collaboration hikes with Always Choose Adventures. Wellness Programs include yoga events, farm daysand forest bathing activities to help increase social cohesion, team building and self-expression. Free Community Education and Nature Programs In 2022, OSMP staff and volunteers led hundreds of nature and education programs, reaching thousands of people. Information on upcoming programs is available on OSMP's Nature Hikes and Programs webpage. Master Plan Strategies CCEI.1, CCEI.2, CCEI.3 and CCEI.7 Public Contact volunteers made 47,375 contacts with visitors Raptor and bat monitor volunteers gave 3,355 hours of their time OSMP provided 55 bilingual nature activities in 2022 Written Information – Item C – Page 33 33 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Webpage Pageviews Webpage Pageviews OSMP Interactive Webmap 205,941 South Mesa Trailhead 6,649 OSMP Trail Search Webpage 56,795 NCAR Trail 6,302 OSMP Department 42,858 Bobolink Trailhead 5,647 OSMP Parking Permits 42,315 Wonderland Lake Trailhead 5,009 OSMP Closures 37,278 Doudy Draw Trailhead 4,654 Chautauqua Trail 30,414 Red Rocks Trailhead 4,604 OSMP Osprey Camera 21,048 The Peoples' Crossing Trailhead 4,688 Voice and Sight Tag Program 19,768 Junior Ranger Program 4,843 Chautauqua Trailhead 17,230 Volunteer for OSMP 4,652 OSMP Dog Regulation Map 15,805 Flagstaff Trail 4,398 Royal Arch Trail 13,674 Wonderland Lake Trail 4,053 Boulder Falls Trail 12,814 Flatirons Loop Trail 4,169 Mount Sanitas Trail 10,913 OSMP Permits 4,176 Flatirons Vista South Trail 9,442 Bear Peak Trail 4,058 Marshall Mesa Trailhead 9,372 Sawhill Ponds Trailhead 4,078 Anemone Hill Trail 9,282 Black Bears and Mountain Lions 3,430 1st/2nd Trail 9,370 Commercial Use Permits 4,129 OSMP Trailhead Search Webpage 9,440 Muddy Trail Closures 3,506 OSMP Evaluation of E-Bikes Project 9,123 Fourth of July Trailhead 3,489 OSMP Wildlife Closure Map 8,403 Mallory Cave 3,334 Lost Gulch Overlook Trailhead 8,148 Gregory Canyon Trail 3,507 OSMP Rules and Regulations 7,440 Bear Canyon Trail 3,390 Dogs on OSMP 7,373 Lions Lair Trail 3,537 Flatirons Vista Trailhead 7,245 Boulder Valley Ranch Trailhead 3,246 Nature Hikes and Programs 6,545 Gregory Canyon Trailhead 3,136 Webpage Hits In 2022, hundreds of Open Space and Mountain Parks webpages and webmaps – maintained by OSMP Resource Information Systems staff – received 989,532 web hits. CCEI.2 50 Most Popular OSMP Webpages in 2022 Written Information – Item C – Page 34 34 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report What this Looks Like (Outcomes): FS.A) LASTING VALUE FOR THE COMMUNITY: OSMP effectively and efficiently manages city taxpayer dollars to build both trust and lasting open space value. FS.B) RESILIENCE TO CHANGE: Financial management strengthens adaptability and resilience to local, national and global market forces and environmental change. FS.C) PROTECTED INVESTMENTS: The community’s long-term investment in open space is protected or enhanced by prioritizing maintenance of OSMP properties and assets. FS.D) PRIORITIZED ACQUISITIONS: Strategic acquisition of land, mineral and water interests continue to play an important role in preserving, enhancing and managing Boulder’s legacy of preservation, agriculture and passive recreation. FS.E) EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION: Financial information is proactively and clearly communicated to promote accountability, increase community understanding of OSMP financial management, and ensure alignment of spending with community priorities. How this is Achieved (Strategies): FS.1) STABILIZE FUNDING: Steadily generate funds through sales and use tax collections while strategically leveraging other revenue streams and local dollars to support OSMP’s capacity to deliver open space services. Financial Sustainability We steward public funding to fulfill the City Charter's purposes for open space. OSMP develops budgets that anticipate major change drivers, such as extreme weather events and fluctuations in revenue and spending. Written Information – Item C – Page 35 35 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report FS.2) BUDGET FOR FUTURE UNCERTAINTY: Create, optimize, and manage budgets that anticipate major change drivers, such as extreme weather events and fluctuations in revenue and spending. FS.3) UNDERSTAND TOTAL COST OF SYSTEM MANAGEMENT: Adopt or create models to understand the total value and cost of managing the OSMP system and its many diverse assets, including impact and investment tracking for upfront and ongoing costs regarding land management, agriculture, trails and other infrastructure. FS.4) TAKE CARE OF WHAT WE HAVE: Focus capital investments on retaining the health of ecosystems on OSMP properties, as well as maintenance of existing trails, amenities and agricultural infrastructure. FS.5) PRIORITIZE ACQUISITIONS IN BOULDER VALLEY’S RURAL PRESERVATION AREA: Prioritize opportunities to acquire land, mineral and water interests in the Area III - Rural Preservation Area – of the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan to advance its goals, OSMP Master Plan focus areas and City Charter purposes for open space. FS.6) PARTNER TO PROTECT LANDS BEYOND THE PRIORITY AREA: Consider acquisition of land, mineral and water interests outside the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan boundary where partnership opportunities help leverage costs and advance OSMP Master Plan focus areas and City Charter purposes for open space. FS.7) PARTICIPATE IN OTHER ACQUISITION OPPORTUNITIES: Consider acquisition of land, water and mineral interests within Area I and II of the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan only when coupled with planning, development or annexation projects or where citywide priorities or partnership opportunities emerge. FS.8) EVALUATE EXISTING REAL ESTATE ASSETS ON OSMP LANDS: To improve the protection of, and align with, open space pur- poses in the City Charter, assess real estate assets and explore alternative preservation and stewardship options to better enable staff to steward and manage for those purposes. FS.9) INVEST IN WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT AND OPERATIONAL NEEDS: To provide effective management of the OSMP system over time, maintain a team-oriented workforce that benefits from experience and ongoing training and is equipped with adequate resources to meet the expectations of the community. FS.10) UPDATE PLANNING FRAMEWORK: Refine OSMP planning methods and products to better inform and prioritize the efficient use of limited funding. Written Information – Item C – Page 36 36 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report Financial Sustainability Notable 2022 Highlights •Stabilized OSMP's Budget Amid COVID. OSMP restored COVID-19 budget reduction and service levels across the department. Staff added more than $500,000 to the budget to support Tier 1 Master Plan strategies. Master Plan Strategy FS.1 •"Taking Care of What We Have." The department continued conservation easement monitoring, access agreements, licenses and disposals, and conservation easement amendments. OSMP staff conducted ongoing stewardship of data and information to support effective decision-making. They also provided front-desk services, providing public information and management of OSMP programs, including Voice and Sight, facility rentals, permits and parking. In addition, staff managed third-party access and construction projects on OSMP lands. Master Plan Strategy FS.4 •Addressing Climate and Wildfire Resiliency. OSMP staff participated in a cross- functional citywide team to prepare for a 2022 climate-related ballot measure and to plan for the proposed tax, which city voters approved in November 2022. Master Plan Strategy FS.1 •Marshall Fire Recovery. OSMP Resource Information Services staff supported over 50 percent of emergency geographic information systems (GIS) work shifts at the Boulder County Emergency Operations Center during the Marshall Fire. This team helped provide up-to-date public mapping and geographic communication during the fire and led the department’s damage assessment efforts. Master Plan Strategy FS.2 •Racial Equity. OSMP created a baseline equity assessment to be used by all departments in the city to help analyze the current state of city equity initiatives and track performance measures in the city's Racial Equity Plan. The department supported OSMP staff members in completing racial equity trainings. All employees included a racial equity performance goal in their 2022 performance management objectives. Master Plan Strategy FS.9 •Asset Management. The department continued to implement a new software solution to help track assets. Those assests included trails, undesignated trails, signs, trailheads, ecological restoration, forestry, water resources and agricultural infrastructure, such as fences and gates. Master Plan Strategy FS. 3 Written Information – Item C – Page 37 37 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report •Investments in Our Workforce and Ongoing Operations. The city adopted an updated compensation and classification system. OSMP supported staff technology, work planning and needs for hybrid work. OSMP staff also launched an internal data portal to ensure data access to help staff support data-driven decisions and adaptive management. Master Plan Strategy FS.9 •Ranger Patrol Log. Rangers utilized data from RAPTOR – a mobile app developed and implemented by OSMP Resource Information Services staff in 2021 – to track trends and inform the Ranger Strategic Plan. Last year was the first full calendar year of ranger patrol log data. Master Plan Strategy FS.9 •Grant for Lippincott Ranch Property. OSMP and Jefferson County received a $1 million grant from Great Outdoors Colorado to reimburse a portion of the purchase costs for the Lippincott Ranch Open Space property. The grant was awarded soon after the property was acquired in 2018 and funds were received in 2022.. Master Plan Strategy FS.1 •Partnership with the Boulder Open Space Conservancy. In 2022, the conservancy raised over $48,000 through a project agreement to support Mount Sanitas restoration efforts. Funding from the conservancy went towards a helicopter that moved materials for repairs on the Mount Sanitas Trail. Master Plan Strategy FS.1 •Other Grant Funding. OSMP received $277,000 in grants to support the deployment of OSMP staff on regional and national wildfire responses, address noxious weed mitigation on open space, help the Junior Ranger program, improve OSMP Ranger operations and enhance ongoing fire mitigation efforts. Master Plan Strategy FS.1 •OSMP Staffing. The department converted three positions from fixed-term to standard ongoing positions in alignment with recent direction from City Council to manage prairie dogs in irrigated areas. These positions will address soil health, prairie dog management and wildlife ecology. OSMP also converted two temporary positions to standard ongoing positions to support OSMP Human Dimensions and geographic information system needs. Master Plan Strategy FS.1 •Real Estate Assets. OSMP received OSBT recommendations regarding open space real estate transactions. Master Plan Strategy FS.8 Written Information – Item C – Page 38 38 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report 2022 OSMP Funding Sales Taxes Support OSMP Operations Boulder residents have created a remarkable open space legacy for themselves and future generations by approving sales tax increases to acquire and maintain open space. Three approved sales tax increments accounted for about 90 percent of OSMP’s $30,990,584 budget in 2022. Currently, the Open Space Fund is made up of the following three sales tax increments: •0.40-percent sales tax which has no sunset. •0.33-percent sales tax which was reduced to 0.22 percent on Jan. 1, 2019, to be reduced to .10 percent on Jan. 1, 2035, then exists in perpetuity. •0.15-percent sales tax which expires Dec. 31, 2039. 2022 Budget Overview Open Space Fund dollars in 2022 supported the implementation of the fiscally constrained funding scenario detailed in the Master Plan. In 2021, OSMP participated in a city requirement to reduce 10% of the base budget. Reductions were made to ensure fund stewardship during a time of economic uncertainty during COVID-19 and were balanced across operating and capital expenditures. In 2022, improved revenue conditions allowed OSMP to restore COVID-19 budget reductions and make some enhancements to service delivery. Overall funding levels remained consistent with the fiscally constrained Master Plan funding scenario. However, projections for 2023 will allow for future budget increases more consistent with the action plan funding scenario. Capital Investment Program OSMP's 2022 budget was aligned with Master Plan priorities and supported Tier 1 Master Plan strategies. Our 2022 Capital Investment Program funding – a city-wide, six-year plan for physical improvements to infrastructure – continued to invest heavily in Tier 1 strategies: The Approved 2021 OSMP CIP Continues to Invest Heavily in Tier 1 Strategies Master Plan Tier 2021 CIP 2022 CIP 2023 CIP Tier 1 77% 72% 63% Tier 2 18% 10% 14% Tier 3 5% 18% 23% Written Information – Item C – Page 39 39 2022 Master Plan Annual Progress Report In 1967, Boulder community members voted to approve a permanent 0.4-cent sales tax to acquire and maintain open space. It was the first time in United States history that a city adopted an open space sales tax! For every $10 spent in Boulder, about 8 cents supports open space OSMP's operating budget in 2023 will be $36,219,207 In 2023, OSMP anticipates it will have 129 full-time staff 2023 Budget The 2023 budget was adopted by the Boulder City Council in October 2022. The department anticipates that 2023 revenues will increase above 2022 levels and OSMP will increase budget to support top Master Plan priorities. During the 2023 budget development process, OSMP will make significant new invest- ments in wildland fire response and climate resilience efforts, including the formation of a new Science and Climate Resilience program and the addition of a new position focused on wildland fire coordination. Additionally, multiple ballot measures passed at the city and county levels will provide new funding streams for wildland fire and climate work. Written Information – Item C – Page 40